U.S estimated on Monday that it is possible to reach an agreement with Iran to save the nuclear pact but he urged to close it as soon as possible, on the eve of the resumption of negotiations in Vienna, which are entering the final stretch.
The European Union (EU), which plays the role of coordinator of this high-risk diplomatic exercise, announced in a brief statement that “after consultations in the capitals with the respective governments, the participants will continue the discussions” on Tuesday in Austria.
The negotiators had withdrawn from the talks table at the end of January, asking for “political decisions” after the “progress” achieved during that month, which allowed them to break out of a long stalemate.
“Despite progress,” the talks “have reached a stage where a conclusion becomes urgent,” a spokesman for the US State Department.
“An agreement that addresses the main concerns of all parties is in sight, but if it is not reached in the coming weeks, Iran’s nuclear advances will make our return to the 2015 text impossible,” he added, referring to the framework agreement signed in that anus.
The talks, which began in the spring of 2021, are between the Iranians and the other parties to the agreement (Germany, China, France, the United Kingdom and Russia), with the indirect participation of the United States.
The United States withdrew from the pact in 2018 under the presidency of the Republican Donald Trump, who considered this text, concluded three years earlier, insufficient to prevent Iran from acquiring the atomic bomb.
As a result of this, all the Economic sanctions Americans against the Islamic Republic, prompting Tehran to begin withdrawing from its commitments and intensifying its nuclear activities.
The negotiations aim to implement a “mutual return” of Washington Y Tehran to the agreement, championed by the current US president, Joe Biden.
But time is running out.
Experts say the Iranians have strayed so far from the restrictions of the 2015 deal that they are just weeks away from having enough fissile material to build a atomic weapon.
The United States warned last week that there were “very few weeks” left, and again said it wanted “direct” negotiations to reach a compromise in this “final stretch”.
“We have maintained for a long time that it would be more productive to talk directly with Iran,” the spokesman for US diplomacy said.
“However, the talks will remain indirect, at the request of Iran. The United States has not participated in any direct meetings with Iran,” he said.
the german chancellor Olaf Scholz described the situation as a “decisive moment”, in an interview with the American newspaper Washington Post published on Monday.
“We send a clear message” to Iran: “It is time to make decisions, not to drag out the process,” he said. “We hope they take advantage of this opportunity.”
“We are five minutes from the finish line,” the Russian negotiator commented. Mikhail Ulyanov, in an interview published on Monday by the Russian newspaper Kommersant. “A draft of the final document has been prepared. There are several points that need more work, but that document is already on the table,” he added.
For its part, Tehran turned the tables on the Americans.
The spokesman for the Iranian Foreign Ministry, Said KhatibzadehHe assured that the answers that “the United States brings to Vienna tomorrow will determine when we can reach an agreement.”
“We hope that the American delegation will return to Vienna with clear instructions on how to fulfill their obligations on the lifting of sanctions“, he pointed out, waiting for “concrete commitments”.
On Friday, Washington took a step by announcing the reinstatement of key exemptions that protect foreign countries and companies involved in non-military civilian nuclear projects of the threat of US sanctions.
This decision should make it possible to “facilitate” the “technical discussions” that are “necessary in the last weeks of the talks,” explained US diplomacy, noting that this “is not a concession to Iran.”
For Iran, however, the measure fell short.
If US officials want to show their “good will”, it is still “insufficient”, reacted the head of Iranian diplomacy, Hossein Amir Abdollahian.
Ali Shamkhani, secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, said on Sunday that Washington and Tehran have so far failed to strike a “balance” in their commitments during the Vienna talks.