The BBC’s ME editor’s odd depiction of the Iranian nuclear programme

The US State Department’s web page concerning the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) describes its purpose as follows:

“On July 14, 2015, the P5+1 (China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States), the European Union (EU), and Iran reached a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) to ensure that Iran’s nuclear program will be exclusively peaceful.” [emphasis added]

At the time the deal was reached the UN issued a statement saying:

“The United Nations has welcomed the agreement reached between international negotiators and the Government of Iran as the two parties pave the way for a viable solution on the Gulf country’s nuclear programme and towards possible peace in the region.” [emphasis added]

On the same day, the IAEA put out a statement that included the following:

“With respect to the clarification of outstanding issues related to the possible military dimensions to Iran’s nuclear programme, the IAEA and Iran have, earlier today, agreed a Road-map as part of the Framework for Cooperation between the Agency and Iran.” [emphasis added]

The British government announced that:

“Prime Minister David Cameron has made a statement following agreement being reached in Vienna on Iran’s nuclear programme.” [emphasis added]

In May 2017 the BBC reported that:

“In a deal with world powers in 2015, Iran accepted curbs on its nuclear programme in return for tangible economic benefits…” [emphasis added]

Clearly the existence of the Iranian nuclear programme is an accepted fact. One must then ponder why, during the 8 a.m. news bulletin (from 02:01:2 here) aired on the BBC Radio 4 ‘Today’ programme on June 6th, audiences heard it described otherwise.

Newsreader Neil Sleat: “The Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu will have talks with Theresa May in Downing Street today – the last stop on a tour of Europe to discuss the best way to curb Iran’s nuclear aspirations. Last month President Trump withdrew US backing for the deal reached in 2015 under which Iran promised to limit its nuclear activities in return for the easing of international sanctions. Britain, France and Germany, along with Russia and China, argue that the deal is needed to head off a regional arms race. Here’s our Middle East editor Jeremy Bowen.”

Bowen: “Mr Netanyahu has said he’ll be concentrating on two subjects: Iran and Iran. First, what he calls Iran’s nuclear programme and second, stopping a long-term Iranian presence in Syria. It’s hard to see any daylight between Mr Netanyahu and President Trump but it’s different in Europe. Mr Netanyahu has already been to Germany and France. Both countries, like Britain, want somehow to save the deal with Iran. But the pressure of renewed US sanctions is already forcing big European countries to cancel investment plans in Iran. The Iranians say they’re preparing to restart uranium enrichment if the deal with world powers collapses. Enriched uranium can be used to make nuclear fuel or nuclear weapons. Theresa May is expected to question Mr Netanyahu about Israel’s killing of more than 100 Palestinians in Gaza since the end of March which she’s already called deeply troubling. He will stick to his line that Israel is using legitimate force against terrorists.” [emphasis in italics in the original, emphasis in bold added]

Iran did not announce that it would “restart” uranium enrichment but that enrichment would be accelerated if the JCPOA fell apart.

“In case European, Russian and Chinese signatories to the deal prove unable to protect its economic benefits for Iran, Khamenei said, “I have ordered Iran’s atomic energy agency to be prepared to upgrade our (uranium) enrichment capacity”.”

The BBC’s Middle East editor’s job is to “make a complex story more comprehensive or comprehensible for the audience” and so obviously one would expect him to inform BBC audiences that over 80% of the Palestinians killed along the Israel-Gaza Strip border since March 30th have been shown to have links to various terror factions.

Instead, Bowen steered listeners towards the understanding that the description of people involved in the pre-planned violent riots, shooting and IED attacks and attempted infiltrations as terrorists is merely a “line” employed by the Israeli prime minister and presented the Iranian nuclear programme as something that ‘Israel says’ exists.

Related Articles:

BBC News plays down Hamas role in Gaza violence – part one


11 comments on “The BBC’s ME editor’s odd depiction of the Iranian nuclear programme

  1. The inspections of Iran have been the most comprehensive ever made. you seem not to comprehend that. Yet again you parrot the misleading claims of the Israeli PM. why. yet again you repeat the adage th that most of those killed were Hamas operatives or words to that effect, you have never supplied any evidence to suggest they were involved in any actions that would lead to Israeli v deaths, So we can only surmise they were killed or murdered because they were Hamas operatives, No moral compass here yet again but perhaps the only reason why 100 snipers were in operation.

  2. Iran has repeated ad nauseam their intention to remove Israel from the map and is quite capable of misleading/fooling the nuclear inspectors. How naive can you get Mr Notrampis ?

    • There are the most intrusive inspections. You are a fool. more so if they actually had a weapon and then used it. Israel would use their 200 odd nukes to flatten Iran.

      A nuke is a defensive weapon rarely an offensive weapon.

  3. It is naive of anyone to assume that Iran has sat on it’s hands since they banned US inspections in 2015, it is Bowen’s vitreoilic attitude towards Israel that brings about all the errors and disinformation that exudes from the Middle East Bureau, he simply cannot accept the fact that he was responsible for his camaraman’s death in the Lebanon war, he blames Israel and will continue to do so as he is in total denial. Stop the BBC bias

  4. I wonder whether it is possible to report any item of news without including a slant? An opinion? I suppose it must be but polarisation is a curse in the media. I do not “favour” either Israel or its arab enemies. I view it as an all too human tragedy with very simple causes.

    • Then you are an idiot. One side is openly calling for the other to be annihilated, and has been trying to do that for the past century. The other side is the Jews.

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