Nuclear Deal Includes Small Iran Assets Thaw

The interim arrangement frees up about $4.2 billion.

US Secretary of State John Kerry (L) and Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad-Javad Zarif (R) attend a meeting of the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany about Iran's nuclear program September 26, 2013 on the sidelines of the General Assembly at UN headquarters in New York. 
AFP/Getty Images
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Jordain Carney
Jan. 17, 2014, 5:15 a.m.

Ir­an will be able to ac­cess $4.2 bil­lion of the $100 bil­lion in as­sets it has abroad un­der the in­ter­im agree­ment reached last year on its nuc­le­ar pro­gram, a U.S. of­fi­cial said Fri­day.

The seni­or ad­min­is­tra­tion of­fi­cial told Re­u­ters that a large per­cent of Ir­an’s for­eign as­sets are from its oil rev­en­ue, but sanc­tions have re­stric­ted Ir­an’s abil­ity to spend the money.

The funds are spread out across vari­ous coun­tries. West­ern au­thor­it­ies will trans­fer the money to Ir­an over the next six months — as long as the in­ter­im deal is be­ing car­ried out — once Ir­an de­cides where it wants to take the money from, the of­fi­cial said.

Ir­an, the United States, United King­dom, Ger­many, France, China, and Rus­sia reached an in­ter­im deal over Ir­an’s nuc­le­ar pro­gram in Novem­ber. Un­der the in­ter­im agree­ment, Ir­an will curb its nuc­le­ar pro­duc­tion in ex­change for lim­ited sanc­tions re­lief. U.S. of­fi­cials have es­tim­ated that the sanc­tions re­lief will total $7 bil­lion.

Talks to reach a long-term agree­ment over the coun­try’s nuc­le­ar pro­gram are ex­pec­ted to start Monday.

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