Iranians ponder Obama’s legacy with rise of Trump

Al-Monitor- As Barack Obama left the White House on Jan. 20, transferring power to Donald Trump, assessments were made about his legacy and whether he fulfilled his promises. To Iranians, one of the most noted of these pledges was the focus on diplomacy to resolve the stalemate over Iran’s nuclear program.

In an August 2007 speech at the Woodrow Wilson Center, Obama had said that “not talking does not work” and suggested that the United States engage in dialogue with adversaries Iran, North Korea and Syria. Obama had also promised that by talking to Iran, he would be able to resolve differences.

Unfortunately, his first term in office coincided with that of Iran’s hard-line former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and thus, there was no practical breakthrough in the row over Iran’s nuclear program. But when President Hassan Rouhani took office in 2013, things took a turn for the better. Nuclear negotiations between Iran and the six world powers accelerated with a particular focus being placed on Iran-US dialogue. These talks ultimately led to the signing of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action on July 14, 2015.
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