Direct US-Iran banking channel could cement nuclear deal

As nuclear talks enter a crucial period ahead of the Nov. 24 deadline, one of the incentives the Barack Obama administration is dangling before Iran is a direct banking channel between a US and an Iranian financial institution, Al-Monitor has learned.

A former US diplomat familiar with the negotiations told Al-Monitor on condition that he not be named that such a proposal is on the table in talks between Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany (P5+1). An Iranian negotiator did not respond to a request for comment.

A Treasury Department spokesperson also declined comment. However, Tyler Cullis, a legal fellow and policy associate at the National Iranian American Council (NIAC) told Al-Monitor, “We’ve heard indications that the idea is being considered.”

Cullis said the creation of what is known as a “blessed channel” would serve several important purposes.

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