Saturday, May 21, 2022

Iran top negotiator: Vienna talks closer than ever to agreement

Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator in the Vienna talks for the revival of the 2015 nuclear agreement says the involved sides are now closer than ever to an agreement.

“After weeks of intensive talks, we are closer than ever to an agreement; nothing is agreed until everything is agreed, though. Our negotiating partners need to be realistic, avoid intransigence, and heed lessons of past 4yrs. Time for their serious decisions,” Ali Bagheri Kani said in a tweet.

His tweet comes amid speculations and reports over the past days that the Vienna talks are headed toward an agreement with a report claiming 98 percent of the outstanding matters have already been resolved.

But some sources say Bagheri’s emphasis on the need for everything to be agreed upon before things are finalized show the importance of details and how they could upend an otherwise positive process.

Meanwhile, on Wednesday, an advisor to the Iranian team, Mohammad Marandi, said an agreement is possible within a few days if “certain outstanding issues” are resolved and that needs political decisions by the US and the European sides.

Russia’s negotiator in the talks also said “it is time to take final decisions” as China’s envoy said involved parties are now “one step away from” an agreement.

Bagheri is leading the eighth round of the Vienna talks with the P4+1, Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany. The discussions began on January 26 and built up on over a year of negotiations under Iran’s previous administration to get the deal back on track and remove anti-Iran sanctions. 

Iran has repeatedly stressed that lifting of the sanctions in a verifiable manner and guarantees that the United States will not unilaterally pull out of the nuclear deal, again, are required before any new agreement is reached.

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