Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Iran Advisor: Nuclear deal imminent despite US pressure

An advisor to Iran’s nuclear negotiating team, who is privy to the details of efforts to revive a 2015 nuclear accord, says the talks have not been derailed despite the pressure campaign by the United States and an agreement is close.

Mohammad Marandi told the Arabic-language Al-Alam news network that Iran is not worried about an upcoming meeting of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)’s Board of Governors on the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program, which Tehran has stressed is solely for peaceful purposes.

After talks for over a year in the Austrian capital Vienna, Iran and the negotiating parties are currently locked in a dispute to save the nuclear agreement following the United States’ withdrawal in 2018.

Marandi said the US has to decide about the outstanding issues that has hampered a final agreement.

The optimistic remarks by the top Iranian advisor contradict with those of Western officials, including US Secretary of State Antony Blinken who said Iran has taken “a step backward” with its latest response to a nuclear deal proposal.

France, Britain and Germany also issued a statement on Saturday saying they had “serious doubts” about Iran’s intentions to revive the nuclear agreement, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

In response, Mikhail Ulyanov, Russia’s lead negotiator at the Vienna talks, wrote in a tweet, “Indeed, there are no issues in the Iranian response that could be a serious obstacle on the way towards the agreement. The conclusion of the Vienna talks depends exclusively on the political will of the participating states.”

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