Iran, US start oblique talks to revive nuclear deal

VIENNA, April 6

European intermediaries began shuttling between Iranian and US officials in Vienna on Tuesday as they sought to bring both countries back into full compliance with the 2015 nuclear deal that Washington abandoned three years ago.

Iran has steadily overstepped the accord’s limits on its nuclear programme in response to Washington’s withdrawal from the accord in 2018 and its reimposition of sanctions that have crippled its economy. While Tehran has repeatedly rebuffed “direct and indirect negotiations” with its old foe, Washington said on Monday it expected the talks to be difficult. Neither side expected any early breakthrough.

“We are confident that we are on the right track, and if America’s will and honesty is proven, it could be a good sign for a better future for this agreement,” Iranian government spokesman Ali Rabiei said.

Officials from Britain, France and Germany, will act as intermediaries between Iran and the US, shuttling between both delegations. — Reuters

‘Onus firmly on the US’

  • Highlighting the difficulties of getting a breakthrough, Majid Takht-Ravanchi, Iran’s envoy to the UN and a former nuclear negotiator, put the onus firmly on the US
  • If US lifted all sanctions, Iran would cease all remedial measures, he said
  • Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has the final say on all state matters, has opposed any gradual easing of sanctions

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