Zarif Calls Iran-G5+1 Ministerial Talk 'A Start'
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said Thursday that today's much anticipated talks with foreign ministers of the six world powers is a “significant first step.”
“This is a beginning to show that there is political will to move towards resolving the issue," said Zarif in a note posted on his Facebook page, adding, “ the 5+1 ministers, too, have tight schedules, like me and therefore we can not expect the session to take long or to come up with a definitive result."
Zarif added that the next round of talks with the G5+1, which comprises the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany, will be held in mid-October at the European UN Headquarters in Geneva.
The meeting which is hosted by EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, and attended by seven foreign ministers, will mark the highest-level, direct contact between the US and Iran in many years as the US secretary of state, John Kerry, comes face-to-face with the Iranian foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif.
But the two top diplomates have no plans for a one-on-one meeting.
In an interview with the Washington Post on Wednesday, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani called for a timeline for negotiations between Iran and the G5+1, saying, "The shorter it is the more beneficial it is to everyone. If it is three months that would be Iran's choice, if it is six months that's still good. It is a question of months not years."
He also said on Wednesday that Tehran had nothing to hide about its nuclear program.
Meantime, Zarif said he hoped his counterparts "have the same political will as we do to start serious negotiations with a view to reaching an agreement within the shortest span of time."