US, P4+1 must take tough decisions on remaining issues

TEHRAN, Jun. 03 (MNA) – Stating that good progress has been made in Vienna talks, but some key issues need to be agreed upon, Iran’s top nuclear negotiator said that the onus is now on the US and the P4+1 to make tough decisions for that to happen.

Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Political Affairs said that certain important issues still remain to be hammered out by Tehran and its partners in the 2015 nuclear deal before they can reach an agreement on a potential revival of the accord, stressing that the onus is now on the US and the other co-signatories to make “difficult decisions” for that to happen.

“All in all, we made good progress, but there are issues left [unresolved], without which an agreement couldn’t be reached, and which have yet to be decided,” Seyyed Abbas Araghchi told reporters at the end of the fifth round of talks between Iran and the P4+1 group of countries on revitalizing the deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), on Thursday. 

“It is not us but…the signatories to the JCPOA and the United States that must…take their own difficult decisions and adapt themselves to the positions of the Islamic Republic,” Araghchi said. “If this happens, we can naturally reach an agreement. Otherwise, we will either have no agreement or hold more consultations.”

Following 10 days of intensive talks, the negotiating delegations concluded that they needed to return to their capitals once again for almost week-long consultations, the Iranian diplomat said, adding that this round of negotiations was not halted but was just adjourned in order to reach better conclusions about the remaining unsolved issues. 

“Nothing can be predicted in diplomatic negotiations by 100 percent. Rationally, the next round of talks could be the final one,” he said.

He added that the five parties to the JCPOA – Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China – and the United States had to make their “difficult decisions” and adapt their positions to those of Iran.

“It is important that we have held several discussions about the main points of difference. There are solutions to each of them, which should be discussed and the best one should be selected,” Araghchi said.

He once again insisted on the country’s “definitive positions” which had not been changed and stressed the importance of adopting strategies for the US return to the JCPOA and the fulfilment of its obligations as per the deal as well as Iran’s assumption of commitments after verifying Washington’s moves “in a way agreed upon by the two sides and in a way that it would serve our interests.”

He said the negotiating teams have completed drafting texts pertaining to different parts of the talks and are making their stances closer “almost in most of the texts…but there are some key issues, which the [two] sides have yet to decide.”

Since April, representatives from Iran and the P4+1 group of countries have been holding talks in Vienna aimed at revitalizing the JCPOA and bringing the US back to compliance.

The US has sent a delegation to Vienna but it is not attending the JCPOA Joint Commission talks directly as Washington is no longer a party to the deal. It has, however, held separate talks with the other parties to the JCPOA.

The US, under former president Donald Trump, left the JCPOA in 2018 and returned the sanctions that had been lifted against Tehran as part of the agreement.

US President Joe Biden has said Washington is willing to return to the pact if Tehran first suspends its countermeasures taken in response to US violations and reimposition of sanctions.

Iran says the onus is on the US to revive the deal as it was Washington, not Tehran, that left the internationally recognized accord in defiance of global criticism.

ZZ/PRESS TV

News Code 174371

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