"The approval by the Iranian Parliament was expected. And now Tehran must make sharp cutbacks in its nuclear program and resolve questions the United Nations nuclear agency has about its past research.
"Iran insists it has no nuclear weapons program, but Western officials say only strict verification can ensure that. Once Iran completes the cutbacks, sanctions relief should follow."
The deal requires inspections of Iran's nuclear sites, which many observers see as a potential sticking point for a country that has resisted oversight of its nuclear program in the past. In an interview with Rouhani last month, NPR's Steve Inskeep pressed the Iranian leader on the issue, asking what might happen when nuclear inspectors ask to see an Iranian military site.
Rouhani acknowledged that while nations have an interest in keeping their defensive capabilities closely held, Iran would cooperate with international inspectors. He said:
"I do believe that all nations do wholeheartedly wish to conserve the secrecy of their defensive doctrine and capabilities. And of course, the International Atomic Energy Agency must be aware of this, and keeping this in mind conduct its inspections, because we all know that if they behave any differently, then no country would live up to the commitments of the additional protocols. But we fully intend to fully collaborate and cooperate with the International Atomic Energy Agency."