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Iran nuclear talks resume with upbeat comments despite skepticism



Diplomats say time is running out to revive the pact then-US President Donald Trump abandoned in 2018 in a move that angered Iran and demoralized other powers involved. – English, Chinese, French, German and Russian.

Delegates from the European Union, Iran and Russia to the talks made optimistic assessments after a new round of negotiations began with a meeting of the remaining parties to the agreement, without the US – who which Iran refuses to meet face-to-face.

Enrique Mora, the EU official leading the talks, said after the meeting – a seventh round of talks aimed at restoring an agreement under which Iran limited its uranium enrichment program was disputed. to get relief from US, EU and UN economic sanctions.

Mora told reporters that the new Iranian delegation was adamant in their demand that all sanctions be lifted. But he also suggested that Tehran not completely reject the results of the previous six rounds of talks held between April and June.

“They accepted that the work done in the first six rounds was a good basis on which to build our work going forward,” he said. “We will, of course, incorporate the new political sensitivities of the new Iranian regime.”

Russia’s special envoy for the talks, Mikhail Ulyanov, said on Twitter that they “have started quite successfully.” Asked if he was optimistic, Iran’s top negotiator, Ali Bagheri Kani, told reporters: “That’s right.”

However, it is unclear whether Iran will agree to resume talks it left in June – at the request of Western powers – or that optimism is justified.

A European diplomat issued a pessimistic note, saying that the Iranians remained firm in their stance and were sometimes tough on them, which was hardly encouraging.

The diplomat said the issues will become clearer when detailed talks on sanctions take place on Tuesday and on nuclear issues on Wednesday.

The meeting in Vienna ended a hiatus due to the June election of Ebrahim Raisi, an anti-Western hardliner. The talks are effectively indirect negotiations between Tehran and Washington, with other officials having no ties between them.

Tehran’s negotiating team has made demands that US and European diplomats consider unrealistic, Western diplomats say.

Iran has adopted a zero-tolerance stance by demanding the lifting of all US and European Union sanctions imposed since 2017, including those unrelated to its nuclear programme. country, in a verifiable process.

Bagheri Kani also said Washington and its Western allies should ensure no new sanctions are imposed in the future.

He told reporters: “All parties in the meeting accepted Iran’s demand that first the state of illegal and unjust US sanctions … be removed and then ( we) discuss other issues and decide on those,” he told reporters.

There was no immediate comment from the major powers on Bagheri Kani’s remarks regarding the sequence of the themes.

In a phone call, French President Emmanuel Macron called on Iran’s Raisi to “participate constructively” to enable a swift return to the deal and keep Iran’s commitments to the United Nations atomic watchdog. United Nations, Macron’s office said.

Iran’s conflict with the International Atomic Energy Agency, which oversees its nuclear program, has gone up in smoke.

As Iran proceeds with its uranium enrichment process, the agency says its inspectors have been subjected to rough treatment and denied access to reinstall surveillance cameras at a site it deems necessary to restore agreement.

Since Trump pulled the United States out of the deal, Iran has violated many of its restrictions that mean extending the time it takes to generate enough fissile material for a nuclear bomb. Iran says it only wants to enrich uranium for civilian use.

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