Breakthrough or Extension: Implications for US and European Relations with Iran

December 2, 2014 - 10:00 am

1030 15th Street, NW, 12th Floor (West Tower)
Washington, DC
Breakthrough or Extension: Implications for US and European Relations with Iran

A discussion with:
Clifford Kupchan  
Eurasia Group 

Cornelius Adebahr 
Associate, Europe Program
Carnegie Endowment for International Peace 

Erich Ferrari 
Attorney at Law 
Ferrari & Associates, P.C. 

Moderated by:
Barbara Slavin
Senior Fellow, South Asia Center 
Atlantic Council  

User-added image

Expectations are rising that Iran and the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany  will reach an agreement on key elements of a comprehensive nuclear agreement trading long-term curbs on Iran’s nuclear program for phased relief of economic sanctions. A breakthrough could significantly improve the chances for US and European cooperation with Iran in dealing with other regional challenges, particularly the rise of the group calling itself the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham, and could also motivate Western businesses to sign new deals with Iran. Speakers will discuss the implications of a deal or a possible extension of negotiations for both political and economic relations with Iran. They will also comment on  the possible ramifications of the midterm election results for an agreement with Iran and what impact it may have on the easing of sanctions.

The Iran Task Force, chaired by Ambassador Stuart E. Eizenstat, seeks to perform a comprehensive analysis of Iran’s internal political landscape, its role in the region and globally, and any basis for an improved relationship with the West. It is supported generously by the Ploughshares Fund.  

DATE:            Tuesday, December 2, 2014

TIME:             10:00 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.

LOCATION:     Atlantic Council
                    1030 15th St. NW, 12th Floor
                    Washington, DC 20005


Cliff Kupchan is Eurasia Group’s Chairman, practice head for Eurasia and Iran director. He provides top-level analysis and thought leadership on global macro issues and also covers Russia’s domestic and foreign policy as well as its energy sector. In addition, he focuses on Iranian nuclear and foreign policy, Iranian domestic politics and international sanctions on Iran.  Prior to joining Eurasia Group in 2005, Kupchan served in the State Department as deputy coordinator of US assistance to Eurasia during the Clinton administration. He played a central role in US efforts to promote positive change in Eurasia; in particular, he led efforts to improve public policy training in Russia and tighten border security in Central Asia. Before that, Kupchan worked for the House International Relations Committee, where he served as the senior foreign policy adviser for Eurasia, North Africa, and foreign assistance. More recently, Kupchan served as a vice president and senior fellow at The Center for the National Interest. From 2000 to 2002, he lived in Moscow and worked as the vice president of the Eurasia Foundation, leading programmatic and fundraising efforts for one of the leading foundations in Russia. Kupchan holds an AB from Brown University and an MA from Stanford University.  

Cornelius Adebahr is a political analyst and entrepreneur based in Washington DC, and Berlin, Germany, working on European foreign policy in its broadest sense. He is an associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, running the Endowment’s Europe Program. In addition, he is an associate fellow of the Research Institute of the German Council on Foreign Relations (DGAP). From 2011-13, he lived in Tehran, working inter alia with the EU presidency held by Cyprus and teaching at Tehran University. Until 2011, he also was a lecturer at the Willy Brandt School of Public Policy at Erfurt University and a member of the Team Europe of the European Commission. He studied political science, international relations, philosophy, public law, and international economics in Tübingen, Paris, and at the Free University Berlin, where he graduated in 2001 before receiving his PhD in 2008. 

Erich Ferrari is a lawyer whose main areas of practice are assisting clients in complying with and addressing issues related to US trade sanctions. In this capacity he works extensively on issues arising before the US Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC). As part of these representations, Ferrari has extensive experience on how US sanctions impact US-Iran trade particularly in the realm of humanitarian trade. He also worked to remove names from OFAC’s Specially Designated Nationals List, obtained OFAC specific licenses to engage in transactions otherwise prohibited by OFAC, and developed and implemented OFAC compliance programs for international companies. Ferrari actively writes on OFAC administered trade sanctions and has been published on the matter. He is often called upon by media outlets to speak on US trade sanctions issues. He is the founder and author of a US trade sanctions blog: