RFE/RL's Charles Recknagel has been looking at a potential sticking point in today's deal:
The Iranian nuclear deal appears to have been unable to put one key issue fully to rest, leaving it to be worked out in practice despite the risk it could severely test the agreement's viability.
That is the thorny problem of how much spontaneous access international inspectors monitoring the deal will have to Iranian facilities where nuclear activities take place.
Some of those facilities are military bases and throughout the negotiations Tehran resisted demands that inspectors from the UN's nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), should have the right to make unannounced visits to any site where they know or suspect nuclear activities are taking place.
The best Iran would offer, after an initial refusal by Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei on May 20 of any inspections of military sites, was what Tehran termed "managed access." Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi told the press that could mean blindfolding inspectors or covering up equipment to ensure they did not see anything that might betray Iranian military secrets. An Iranian lawmaker said it would mean limiting inspectors to taking environmental samples around military facilities.
However, such restrictions were promptly rejected by Washington. U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on June 8 that the United States would not accept a deal unless access was granted "to whatever Iranian sites are required to verify that Iran’s program is exclusively peaceful -- period."
With the two sides initially so far apart, the Vienna negotiators had to search hard for a compromise and, in the end, appear to have found one that defers the hard work of actually deciding how much access inspectors have to a later time.
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Iran and the IAEA agreed on a "road map" aimed to clear up questions about Tehran's past nuclear activity. The document, signed in Vienna on July 14 by IAEA head Yukiya Amano and Iran's nuclear chief, Ali Akbar Salehi, aims to resolve by the end of 2015 "all past and present outstanding issues that have not already been resolved by the IAEA and Iran."