How Europe and Iran's Neighbors View the Nuclear Deal Future

September 25, 2017 - 12:00 pm

Atlantic Council, 1030 15th ST NW, 12th Floor
Washington, DC
Panel 1: Europe and the Iran Deal  (12:00 to 1:30 p.m.)

A conversation with:

Gérard Araud
Ambassador of France to the United States

Sir Kim Darroch
Ambassador of the United Kingdom to the United States
David O'Sullivan
Ambassador of the European Union to the United States

Peter Wittig
Ambassador of Germany to the United States

Moderated by:

Barbara Slavin
Director, Future of Iran Initiative
Atlantic Council

Introduced by:

Stuart E. Eizenstat
Chair, Iran Advisory Board; Member Executive Committee
Atlantic Council

Panel 2: The Region and the Iran Deal (2:00  to 3:30 p.m.)

A conversation with:

Hussein Ibish
Senior Resident Scholar
Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington

Hossein Mousavian
Middle East Security and Nuclear Policy Specialist
   Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs
Kadir Ustun 
Executive Director
SETA Foundation at Washington, DC

Moderated by:

Barbara Slavin
Director, Future of Iran Initiative
Atlantic Council

As President Trump weighs whether to recertify for a third time Iran’s compliance with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), the Atlantic Council's Future of Iran Initiative invites you to two panel discussions on the views of Europe and Iran’s neighbors, respectively, toward the nuclear agreement.  While the US president and other critics of the JCPOA have been quick to focus on continuing areas of discord with Iran, primarily its regional military interventions, European and most Middle Eastern nations support continued compliance with the nuclear accord. The European Union has sought to bolster the JCPOA by deepening political and economic ties with the Islamic Republic while Iran’s Arab neighbors have adopted a more adversarial position. Panels will discuss the implications of changes in US policy toward Iran and whether Iran will continue to adhere to the JCPOA.  

The discussions will be held Sept. 25, 2017 from 12:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Atlantic Council. The event is open to the press and on the record.

On Twitter? Follow @AtlanticCouncil and use #ACIran

Atlantic Council
1030 15th Street NW, 12th Floor (West Tower Elevator) 
Washington, DC 

This event is open to press and on the record.


Gérard Araud is Ambassador of France to the United States. A career diplomat, Araud was appointed to this position in September 2014. He previously held numerous positions within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development, notably Director for Strategic Affairs, Security and Disarmament (2000-2003), Ambassador of France to Israel (2003-2006), Director General for Political Affairs and Security (2006-2009), and, most recently, Permanent Representative of France to the United Nations in New York (2009-2014). Over the course of his career, Araud has developed specialized knowledge in two key areas: the Middle East and strategic & security issues. As regards the latter, he was the French negotiator on the Iranian nuclear issue from 2006 to 2009. 

Sir Kim Darroch presented his credentials to President Obama as Ambassador of the United Kingdom to the United States on 28 January 2016. His diplomatic career spans three decades and has been primarily focused on national security issues and European Union policy. He served as National Security Adviser, from January 2012 to September 2015 acting as Secretary of the National Security Council and leading the National Security Team on issues such as the rise of Daesh in Iraq and Syria, Russian aggression in Ukraine, the nuclear threat from Iran and the collapse of government authority in Libya. Prior to his appointment as National Security Adviser, he served in Brussels as the UK Permanent Representative to the European Union from 2007 to 2011, representing UK interests in areas such as enlargement, the aftermath of the financial crisis, and the issues around European integration. From 2004 to 2007, he served as EU Adviser to the Prime Minister and Head of the Cabinet Office European Secretariat.

Stuart E. Eizenstat is chairman of the Iran Advisory Board for the Future of Iran Initiative and a member of the Atlantic Council Executive Committee. He has held a number of key senior US government positions, including Chief White House Domestic Policy Adviser to President Jimmy Carter (1977-81); US Ambassador to the European Union (1993-96); Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade (1996-97); Under Secretary of State for Economic, Business, and Agricultural Affairs (1997-99); and Deputy Secretary of the Treasury in the Clinton Administration (1999-2001). During the Clinton Administration, he had a prominent role in the development of key transatlantic initiatives, including the negotiations of the Transatlantic Agenda with the European Union, the development of the Transatlantic Business Dialogue among European and US CEOs, and the negotiation of agreements with the European Union regarding the Helms-Burton Act and the Iran-Libya Sanctions Act.

Hussein Ibish is a senior resident scholar at the Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington and a weekly columnist with The National (UAE). He previously served as a senior fellow at the American Task Force on Palestine, executive director of the Foundation for Arab-American Leadership and communications director for the
American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee. He has a PhD in Comparative Literature from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

Seyed Hossein Mousavian is a Middle East Security and Nuclear Policy Specialist at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. He served as Iran’s Ambassador to Germany (1990-1997), Head of the Foreign Relations Committee of Iran’s National Security Council (1997-2005), and spokesman for Iran in its nuclear negotiations with the international community (2003-2005). His latest book, “Iran and the United States: An Insider’s view on the Failed Past and the Road to Peace,” was released in May 2014.

David O'Sullivan was appointed Ambassador and Head of the European Union Delegation to the United States in Washington, D.C. in November 2014.  

As the European Union's top diplomat to the United States, O'Sullivan oversees the EU's bilateral relationship with the US and the direction and work of the EU Delegation including political, economic and commercial affairs.  His work supports the High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy in implementing the EU's foreign policy and he represents the Presidents of the European Council and the European Commission. Prior to his appointment as Ambassador to the US, he was the Chief Operating Officer of the 'European External Action Service' and responsible for establishing this new EU diplomatic service.  The Service is one of the largest diplomatic networks with 140 delegations across the globe.  

Kadir Ustun is the Executive Director at the SETA Foundation at Washington, D.C. He also served as an Assistant Editor of Insight Turkey, an academic journal published by the SETA Foundation. Ustun holds a PhD in Middle Eastern, South Asian, and African Studies from Columbia University and a Master’s degree in History from Bilkent University. He has contributed to various SETA reports and his writings have appeared in various publications such as Insight Turkey, Al Jazeera English, Daily Sabah, Hurriyet Daily News, Mediterranean Quarterly, and Cairo Review of Global Affairs among others. He is also co-editor of edited volumes History, Politics and Foreign Policy in Turkey, Change and Adaptation in Turkish Foreign Policy, and Politics and Foreign Policy in Turkey: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives.

Peter Wittig has served as German Ambassador to the United States since April 2014. Prior to this, he was German Ambassador to the United Nations in New York. He represented Germany during its tenure as a member of the UN Security Council in 2011 and 2012. Wittig joined the German Foreign Service in 1982. He has served at the Embassy in Madrid; at the German Mission to the United Nations in New York; as private secretary to the Foreign Minister at the headquarters, then located in Bonn; and as Ambassador in Lebanon and in Cyprus. He was the German Government Special Envoy on the “Cyprus question” (the division of Cyprus). He has acquired extensive knowledge of the Middle East.
Before starting his career in the German Foreign Service, Wittig studied history, political science, and law at Bonn, Freiburg, Canterbury, and Oxford universities and taught as an assistant professor at the University of Freiburg.

Barbara Slavin is the director of the Future of Iran Initiative at the Atlantic Council and a columnist for, a website devoted to news from and about the Middle East. The author of Bitter Friends, Bosom Enemies: Iran, the US and the Twisted Path to Confrontation (2007), she is a regular commentator on US foreign policy and Iran on NPR, PBS, and C-SPAN. A career journalist, Slavin previously served as assistant managing editor for world and national security of the Washington Times, senior diplomatic reporter for USA TODAY, Cairo correspondent for the Economist, and as an editor at the New York Times Week in Review. She has covered such key foreign policy issues as the US-led war on terrorism, policy toward "rogue" states, the Iran-Iraq war, and the Arab-Israeli conflict. She has traveled to Iran nine times. Slavin also served as a public policy scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, where she wrote Bitter Friends, and as a senior fellow at the US Institute of Peace, where she researched and wrote the report Mullahs, Money and Militias: How Iran Exerts Its Influence in the Middle East.