WASHINGTON — The text of the agreement to implement the interim nuclear deal with Iran has been provided to lawmakers on Capitol Hill, a senior senate aide said on Thursday.
"The administration has sent the text of the implementation agreement to the Hill but has restricted its access so that the public and media cannot view it — this raises serious questions as to why the administration is so afraid of the American people viewing this agreement," the aide said. "Only members and congressional staff with security clearances are being allowed to view it."
The White House has previously said that the European Union made the decision not to make the document public. The world powers that negotiate with Iran reached an agreement on Jan. 20 to implement the nuclear deal that was reached in November in Geneva that will restrict Iran's nuclear program in exchange for some sanctions relief.
A spokeswoman for the National Security Council said that White House press secretary Jay Carney would address the issue in his press briefing on Thursday.
Spokespeople for the State Department did not immediately return a request for comment.
The decision not to release the document has attracted criticism from opponents of the president's policy on Iran.
"The Iran deal shouldn't be kept secret from the American people," Sen. Mark Kirk, one of the authors of Iran sanctions legislation moving through the Senate, said on Thursday. "If the White House is proud of the deal, it should be able to withstand public scrutiny."
A senate aide with knowledge of the agreement text said that the agreement does not require dismantlement of the Arak heavy water reactor in a final deal, and that it includes a provision for the Iranians to get to veto reports of violations of the interim agreement.
"Iran sits on the commission that decides whether a violation occurred so enforcement of the deal may prove impossible — making it much more important for the Senate to pass the enforcement bill under consideration," the aide said, referring to the Kirk-Menendez sanctions bill.