PARIS: International negotiations on Iran’s nuclear activities are proceeding so slowly that they are unlikely to cause any agreement “within a reasonable timeframe,” France’s Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said Tuesday.
The discussions taking place in Vienna “are under way but from our perspective they’re slow, too slow,” Le Drian told the French parliament.
There’s an important urgency on this dilemma due to Iran’s own actions and the trajectory of its nuclear programme,” he added.
On Monday Iran’s foreign ministry spokesman had said that efforts by “all parties” to revive his country’s 2015 nuclear agreement with world powers had led to “good progress” throughout the Vienna talks.
Negotiations to salvage the nuclear deal resumed in late November after these were suspended in June as Iran elected a fresh, ultraconservative government.
The 2015 deal — agreed by Iran, the US, China, Russia, Britain, France and Germany — offered Tehran sanctions relief in exchange for curbs on its nuclear programme.
But then-US president Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew the US in 2018 and reimposed biting sanctions, prompting Tehran to begin rolling back on its commitments.
“There has been good progress on all four issues of removing sanctions, nuclear issues, verification and obtaining guarantees” during the latest round of talks, Iran’s foreign ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh told reporters on Monday.
The US has participated only indirectly in the Vienna talks, which seek to bring Washington back in the accord and to make certain Iran re-adheres to a unique commitments.
Le Drian had sounded more positive about the talks on Friday, when he explained these were progressing on a “rather positive path” while still emphasising the urgency of bringing them to a fast conclusion.
The following day his Iranian counterpart Hossein Amir-Abdollahian said the 2 sides are nearing a “good agreement” because of France “behaving reasonably” after previously playing “the role of a poor cop” ;.
Britain, France and Germany said last month that the window for concluding a deal was “weeks, not months”, as a result of speed of Iran’s nuclear enrichment.
More Latest Links: