“We have never been so close to a deal as now,” Steinmeier told reporters following his meeting with Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly meeting in New York on Thursday.
He, however, said that the final phase of the talks before the end of the November 24 deadline is “probably the most difficult.”
There are still “hurdles” to get over in the course of the talks, he said but stressed that a collapse of the current negotiations was “not permissible.”
During the meeting with the top German diplomat, Rouhani said a nuclear deal between Tehran and the P5+1 group of world powers was possible if the opposite side demonstrated political will toward the conclusion of an agreement.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran seeks a win-win agreement for all parties,” he added.
The Iranian president underlined the need for the immediate signing of a comprehensive deal but stressed that such a deal should protect Iran’s rights without bias and be based on international regulations.
Iran and the six world powers – the United States, France, Britain, Russia, China and Germany – are currently in talks to work out a final accord that would end the dispute over Tehran’s civilian nuclear work.
The two sides clinched an interim deal in Geneva, Switzerland, last November. The agreement took effect on January 20 and expired six months later. In July, they agreed to extend the negotiations until November 24 amid differences over a number of key issues.