tv Ali Velshi on Target Al Jazeera June 30, 2015 10:30pm-11:01pm EDT
here tomorrow. [ ♪ ] i'm "ali velshi on target", from high atop iran's capital city of tehran. >> a free world cannot allow iran to have a nuclear weapon. >> how much could nations trust the united states. >> this morning iran's president offered the same wild accusations against the united states. >> we seek a comprehensive diplomatic solution. >> this deal will not change iran for the better. >> a difficult and long-lasting
nags at security problem that we have faced in a long time tonight - news that the deadline to determine the future of iran's nuclear programme has been extended. we have full coverage tonight - including our unprecedented access in the streets of this the capital city of iran. i'm here in tehran, in our "on target" studio in new york is mary snow. >> last night you brought us news of cautious optimism that a deal would be done. is the feeling of where you are one of here we go again or do you sense the optimism is holding? >> it's a good question. this is a city that in a day has 15 million people in it, and we are trying to talk to as many of them as possible. it runs the gamut. there's eagerness for a deal in this country. it's not about the nuclear deal,
it's more to do with prosperity, the sanctions, with the amount of - that it costs to buy things because of the devaluation of the real, the currency. people want the end of sanctions and don't care how to get about that. they want a strengthening of the economy. at the same time this is a country that's been under sanction, and particularly under financial and banking sanction for some time. and the net result is that people have learnt to live with it. they work around the sanctions. today we drove through the city, the streets of tehran, and found that you can buy almost everything you want to buy the same way you could in an american city. the difference is are you making enough money, is it worth enough to make things viable. i'm carrying in my pocket in excess of a million units of their currency. that may be good to get my team
dipper. that's the issue -- dinner. that's the issue facing iranians. yes a deal of optimism. >> economic sanctions of the united states and its partners have in the nuclear chest match, sanctions are credited with forcing iran back to the negotiating table in 2013, after 34 years of hostilities dating back to the hostage crisis, and putting an end to the sanction assist a top priority of the president, elected in 2013. after taking office, hassan rouhani went on a campaign to end iran's economic isolation, saying nuclear weapon had no place in iran's future, and calling western sanctions a form of violence. the sanctions we are talking about target iranian individuals and various industries from banking and insurance to shipping and energy, and have been imposed by the united states, the european union and the united nations. >> in 2012 the u.s. and e.u.
slapped sanctions on the oil industry. as a result iranian oil revenues fell by a third in 2012. that's a big deal. oil makes up 80% of iran's export earnings, and 50% of government revenue. the sanctions mean real pain. easing the pain is a huge task, made harder by a climate change of distrust. in united states, critics say iran will not abide by its commitments and will try to develop a nuclear weapon. in iran mistrust runs deep, built on a history of rocky relations. the question is whether a new chapter in the history will be written. the answer today is maybe. james bays joins us now from austria. >> this was supposed to be the deadline for the nuclear talks.
i have to say for some days it's been clear that they weren't going to get a deal on 30 uni. ask, the foreign minister of iran went back to tehran for consultations and just arrived. that's why they decided to extend the interim deal, giving some relief and restrained iran's expansion of its programme. that has been suspended until 7 july. the diplomats i spoke to from the p5+1, the six countries negotiating on behalf of the international community don't want this to go to the 7th of the july, and would like a deal in the next few days, positive sound coming after the meetings. the foreign minister had with the secretary of state john kerry, and the russian foreign
minister sergey lavrov. having said that, remember this is supposed to be the final deal that will constrain rain for more than a decade making sure the programme is civilian and peaceful. it has to be watertight. every definition in the deal has to be written out so that everywhere nose what they were talking about, and no one can say down the line there was a misunderstanding. >> coming up, president obama talks the talk, but will he walk the walk. >> i have said from the start i'll walk away from the negotiations if, in fact, it's a bad deal. >> our coverage continues from tehran in a moment. >> you have kids here who've
i'll tarring are -- "ali velshi on target". >> and i'm mary snow in new york. we have heard from both countries, do you get a disrust or dislake. -- dislike of american people. >> it's interesting, there's a wall with a big building with the american flag with the stars are skulls, not stars, and the
lines in the flag end in bombs, you hear people talking about the destruction of america. i haven't found them. i run into people that seem to like america, american things, american people. the drink of joys is coca-cola. driving through the streets of tehran, i saw more places selling apple product than i had seen in some cities in the united states. this afternoon i got a chance to sit with a professor from the university of tehran, and put the question to him. i said it was a contrast in this one-sided impression of iranians wishing death for america, and on the other side consuming american products and liking them, including travel to america and exchange between the countries. he said don't be a naive western journalist and think because people drink coke or like iphones, that it translates into liking or respect for america.
maybe we drink coke because we like the taste of coke. maybe we like iphones, because they work well. he says there is, in fact, in some quarters in iran, a very deep distrust of america, going back to the '50s. in 1950 iran held what most in the west would think is a fair and democratic election, a nationalist government was elected, and one of the first moves of that prime minister was to nationalize the british oil companies in iran. they felt they were not getting a square deal from the brits, a small percentage of profits came from iran, and they didn't think the brits were telling them how much oil was coming out. the c.i.a. orchestrated the removal of the president or empowered the shah of iran. there has been a distrust of america and great britain since. there's a lot of young people
that don't remember that sort of thing, but the distrust of america and great britain is deep in this country. i have been here in train -- tehran talking to as many as i can. i know that president obama spoke about the situation concerning the negotiations and the deal in washington today. tell us an about the about that. >> let's go to washington where al jazeera's chief white house correspondent mike viqueira is standing by, a nuclear deal would be a major victory, but the president is prepared to walk away from the talks, right. >> he is saying that because there has been a lot of criticism, there's another delay and deadline, on april 2nd, when they reach the deal, the framework, the hope among many is the heavy lifting was down at that point, and the rest would be technical details to wrap up. it's not the case. since the ink was dry or before
the ipping was dry on the -- ink was dry on the april 7th agreement, there has been diamanagement rickly opposed agreements as to what was agreed to. two sticking points, the iranians say military facilities will not be open to inspections from international nuclear inspectors, united states and allies say it will be. on the issue of lifting sanctions, president obama and others have credited with bringing iran to the table to begin with, the iranians say they have been lifted on day one, and the united states says they'll be eased over time. president obama, in the face of the criticism, she was slipped to july 7th, many including mitch mcconnell causing for a pause, fearing that president obama is allowing too many headlines to be crossed and president oba
president obama gave a forceful response. >> i said from the start i will walk away from the negotiations if, in, it's a bad deal. if we can't provide assurances that the pathways for iran cobb taping the nuclear weapon are closed, if we can't verify that. if the inspections regime is inadequate. then we are not going to get a deal. >> president obama said that in the past, particularly as the interim agreement was netted in april. it's not a question of trusting iran. a lot of people in washington, not to mention binyamin netanyahu, vocally against what the president is trying to accomplish. they don't trust the iranians and don't thing their nuclear status can be verified. >> how long is the president prepared to net, does he have his own deadline. as a practical matter, june 30th
was an arbitrary deadline as was the last dead line. the critics are just going to become loud, extremely vocal, more vocal. congress is out this week. when they come back and there's no deal, they'll jump all over them. if we look at the clock and the way in is submitted to congress. you'll recall congress reached a compromise where they'll have say so, an ability to vote up or down, if you look at the way that is structured, they want that done before congress leaves on their recess, if they don't get it done, it appears unlikely mike viqueira, chief white house correspondent, thank you for joining us. president obama is warning that he'll walk away from negotiations with iran is another sign that a nuclear deal is by no means done.
the extension of the talks until july 7th cast doubt on whether the two sides will overcome their differences. many observers are optimistic that all the back and forth will ultimately pay off. they include barbara slaven, a senior fellow at the south asia center of the atlantic council, the author of "bitter friend, bosom enemies - iran, the u.s. and twisted path to confrontation", and joins me from washington. welcome. >> thank you very much. pleased to be with you. >> back in april you said that the chances of war with iran would go down by a gas illion. if the framework agreement struck in switzerland was implemented. i want you to listen for a moment to what israeli prime minister said in march to congress about a deal. take a listen. >> so this deal will not change iran for the better, just the middle east for the worst. a deal that is supposed to
prevent nuclear proliveration would, instead, spark a nuclear arms race in the most dangerous part of the planet. this will not be a farewell to arms, a farewell to arms control. >> how do you answer critics who say that this deal will not do enough to prevent iran from developing a nuclear weapon in. >> i ask the critics, including binyamin netanyahu, what is the alternative. he'll say he wants a better deal, more restrictions, as you know in a negotiation, it's a 2-way process. you don't get everything you want the the other side doesn't get everything it wants. my understanding of the deal, as expressed in the agreement in switzerland, is that it will prevent iran from developing a nuclear weapon for a decade, if not more. given what is going on in the middle east, that is a tremendous achievement, and will
help to stablilize the region, not the evers. reverse. today's new assist that talks have been extended until july 7th. i'd like to know if you think it's a good sign or does it show that the iran's supreme leader had an effect on the talks and the two sides cannot resolve their differences. >> i'm not at all surprised by the extension. the deadline is july the 9th. that's when the obama has to submit the agreement and a bunch of other documents to congress. then congress gets a 30 day review period. if they miss the july deadline, they get a 60 day period, which the administration wants to him the time that congress will review the dole. i'm not surprised. these are difficult issues. this is not going to be a 4-page agreement like the one in april. this is going to be a lengthy document with a number of
technical annexes, and i think what they are engaged in now is finalising all the technical details so that the agreement will stand, that it's something that can be implemented, so there's no ambiguities on either side. >> there's a lot of speculation last week about what exactly motivated the ayatollah khamenei to draw a so-called red lines about what iran would not accept. that speculation, i think, speaks to how hard it is for americans to under the power dynamics within iraq, between religious leaders, president hassan rouhani, and the masses. what role could public opinion play in a country where the median age is under 30. how much will is influence what happens in the talks? >> i think a great deal. i mean, we are where we are because there were presidential elections in 2013, and the least doctrine air candidate was elected president. he brought in with him a team of
u.s. educated negotiators for whom this is really a second time that they are trying now to reach an important agreement with the united states. they tried previously from 2003 to 2005. they were not successful. because the george w. bush administration did not want to be involved in negotiations that gave iran any concessions. this is a second bite at the apple for all of the folks, and it's a legacy issue for them, survival for the regime. economic sanctions hurt iran tremendously. and the vast majority of the population wants relief from the sanction, they want to be reint grade into the world economy and want a better relationship with the united states. the ayatollah khamenei is distrustful of the united states, but he has to acknowledge the overwhelming sentiment among his people for a change in the relationship with
the united states and the west. >> i want to ask you quickly about the sanctions of some u.s. lawmakers that want to extend for a decade beyond 2016. what is your view about having snap-back sanctions if iran does not live up to obligations under a nuclear deal? >> that is part of the agreement, that the sanctions, many would snap back if there's a violation of the agreement. to try to extend american sanctions now is really very detrimental to the process. we should get the deal, see if the iranians implement it before talking about sanctions. >> barbara slaven of the south asia center atlantic council. thank you for joining us. next, iran and the united states drew red lines in the negotiations. one country will have to give in. the question is which one. we'll look at the sticking point when we come back.
i'm "ali velshi on target" from high atop iran's capital city, tehran one of the sticking points is a lack of trust wean the united states and iran, the supreme leader ayatollah khamenei refuses to free sensitive work in the country, he said: line the u.s. and allies insists that iran halts the nuclear development work for 10 years, joining me is the executive director of the american iranian council, an organization that seeks to broker understanding between iran and the united states. thank you for joining us. >> thank you for having me. >> we talked about the mistrust,
something you hope to brim, i wanted to ask you in term -- hope to bridge. i want to ask you in terms of what the typical american citizens has a misunderstanding about. when they see signs of death to america - i want to read a quote from the ayatollah khamenei - of course, yes, death to america, because: of course, he is saying death to america. what is the biggest misunderstanding that the average american has? >> unfortunately u.s. iran relations have been marked since the revolution in '79. there were episodes since the hostage crisis since american diplomats were taken in iran, and the involvement of the u.s. in terms of backing the saddam hussein regime against the war in the iran-iraq war.
so the mistrust is on both sides. the image that the iranians have in the u.s., per se, from the general public is of a country that is revolutionary, anti-american and anti-sem it, and one that is the u.s. enemy. the narrative is a bit distorted and mixed in with misinformation, misanalysis and the major componts as to why this has gone on for a negative image, is that these two countries have not engaged with one another for more than three decades. for the first time, two years ago the iranian officials, with their counterparts in the u.s., secretary of state john kerry, and his counterparts met for the first time. we can see on the nuclear front, the fact that there has been improvement is because the two countries sat down across from each other and started to talk.
however, there is, of course, as you heard, ayatollah khamenei mentioning that the source of the economic pressures on iran, the sanctions regime, the covert operations have their roots with the u.s. foreign policy to ryan, and he is correct. if we look at the history of the relations, what u.s. foreign policy plied on iran include basically almost every coercive measure except the war. >> again, getting back to my original question, what is the biggest misunderstanding that americans have of a typical iranian citizen? >> when countries don't talk at a government level, when there's no interaction between civil society in u.s. and rain. when there's difficulties for iranians to come to america through all the different obstacle of visas and so forth, and the demonization of iran, if there's no exchange, we are
going to continue to be in this shadow of understanding each other. and that is what the council for the past 25 years, when it was not fashionable to talk about it, has been engaged in it. how do we bring cultural exchanges, economic stages, how do we get the politicians to talk to each other. these are measures benefitting both countries, making the american public better understand what america is all about. >> we'll leave it there. executive director of the ploirnian council. thank you for joining us. i want to bring back ali velshi from tehran, another day of deals, delays and deadlines, can you sum it up for us? >> yes. in the west the conversation in iran is whether it want nuclear weaponry, wh it poses a threat to israel and others. in the streets of drain tehran, nuclear power is a source of
pride. the problem is economics. the i deal of a deal is they want trade, they want sanctions lifted. they want to be able to do business with the world and by products from the west and america. they want to sell their product, as i told you yesterday, it stand out to me that i spoke to a carpet merchant that said before the sanctions they'd send a 40 foot container a week of carpets to america, persian rugs. now they don't sell to america, and they are expensive for iranians because the value of the currency fell. i'm not finding all sorts of people that want to look into the cameras of an american news organization and tell me what is oning with their government -- wrong with their government, but a lot say the sanctions are hurting. if they trade off the nuclear programme, in exchange to growth, prosperity, and in exchange for a stable currency,
i expect they'll think it's a good deal. i'm ali velshi from tehran. >> ali velshi will be back from tehran, iran with his exclusive reporting. that is our show for today. i'm "snow dragon", thank you for joining us. diplomatic milestone, the u.s. and cuba open embassies in washington and havana. thousands of emails from hillary clinton's cause as secretary of state released in this evening, how much of an impact could it have on a run for the white house. >> unknown territory.