Top Negotiator: Iran, Sextet Seeking Specific Agenda for N. Talks
TEHRAN (Tasnim) - Abbas Araqchi, Iran’s deputy foreign minister and one of the country’s top nuclear negotiators, said Tehran and the six world powers are seeking to reach a specific agenda to continue the talks over the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program.
Speaking to reporters following the first session of the fresh round of nuclear talks between Iran and the G5+1 (the US, Russia, China, Britain and France as well as Germany) in the Austrian capital of Vienna, Araqchi described the purpose of the ongoing talks as “to achieve a definite agenda for the continuation of the negotiations.”
The Iranian negotiator further made it clear that reaching an ultimate accord on Tehran’s peaceful nuclear program will be a long and laborious process, and added, “We have an arduous task to reach the final solution, and this session was the outset of a the long way.”
Delegations representing Iran and the G5+1 (also known as P5+1 or E3+3) concluded the first session of the negotiations earlier today, with the aim of reaching a comprehensive agreement on Tehran’s peaceful nuclear program.
Elsewhere in his remarks, Araqchi said the first session took less than an hour, and described the beginning of the talks as good.
He also noted that the negotiations are likely to be extended into Wednesday.
Araqchi then quoted Iran’s foreign minister and head of the country’s negotiators, Mohammad Javad Zarif, as saying that Tehran is “determined to continue the talks in the atmosphere of goodwill”, saying Iran expects the other side to show such resolve as well.
“The criterion for the (Vienna) talks is the Joint Plan of Action, and no subject outside that framework could be on the agenda,” Araqchi said.
The new round of negotiations between Iran and the six powers are being held roughly three months after the two sides signed an interim six-month deal on Tehran’s nuclear program in the Swiss city of Geneva on November 24, 2013.
The interim deal (the Joint Plan of Action), which has come into effect since January 20, stipulates that over the course of six months, Iran and the six countries will draw up a comprehensive nuclear deal which will lead to a lifting of the whole sanctions on Iran.
Commenting on the possible subjects in the final negotiations to reach a comprehensive agreement, Araqchi noted that the Vienna talks will also include the topics pertaining to the limits on Iran’s uranium enrichment activities, as well as the Additional Protocol.
“The Geneva deal stipulates that (Iran’s) enrichment will continue with limitations,” he said.
“Such limitations will be discussed in these talks (in Vienna),” he pointed out.