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14 Feb, 2022 10:10

Iran shares progress on nuclear negotiations

Tehran says Vienna talks have not reached a dead end
Iran shares progress on nuclear negotiations

The success of the nuclear talks in Vienna depends on the willingness of the Western parties to come to an agreement, a spokesman for the Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs told the press on Monday.

“Our distance from the agreement is inversely proportional to the will of the Western and American sides. The higher the will of the Americans, the lower our distance from reaching an agreement,” Saeed Khatibzadeh stated. 

He claimed that Iran made a political decision many years ago to respect the Obama-era nuclear treaty, but insisted it was the West that had left the pact and therefore it was the West that needed to respond to Tehran’s initiatives. Khatibzadeh said that the Vienna talks had not reached a dead end, without elaborating further.

Speaking on Friday, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi said that Iran never had hope for the Vienna talks. “We put our hopes in the east, west, north, south of our country and never have hope in Vienna and New York,” Raisi stated.

Negotiators returned to the Austrian capital in late 2021 in an attempt to bring Iran and the US back in line with the terms of the nuclear deal, negotiated by the Obama administration in 2015. Parties had agreed to comprehensive outside oversight of Iran’s civilian nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief.

The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) was signed by Iran, the US, the UK, China, France, Germany, and Russia.

Former US President Donald Trump unilaterally pulled out of the deal in May 2018, however, and imposed additional sanctions against Tehran. Relations between Iran and the US have not improved under the Biden administration.