Germany says a final accord over Iran’s nuclear energy program could possibly be struck by the middle of the year.
Speaking on Saturday, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said he was hopeful of having “a possible deal wrapped up by the middle of the year at the latest.”
He made the remarks after meeting in Paris with his American, French, and British counterparts, John Kerry, Laurent Fabius, and Philip Hammond, as well as the European Union’s foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini.
“We negotiate knowing full well that our responsibility is also to negotiate for others and that means only a lasting and resistant deal,” Steinmeier said.
After a 20-minute meeting with Fabius in the French capital, Kerry (seen below) also said, “We want an agreement that’s solid.”
Iran and the P5+1 are seeking to seal a comprehensive nuclear deal by July 1. The two sides have already missed two self-imposed deadlines for inking a final agreement since they signed an interim one in the Swiss city of Geneva in November 2013.
At the multilateral meeting, Kerry briefed his opposite numbers on the latest round of nuclear talks with Iran, which took place over three days in the Swiss city of Montreux earlier this week.
US-Iran bilateral talks are due to resume on March 15, most likely in Geneva.
Further talks between the Islamic Republic and the group of world powers — Britain, China, France, Russia, the United States, and Germany — are also expected.
“These will be decisive negotiations,” Steinmeier said.
Mogherini also said, “The next couple of weeks are going to be crucial and the chance that we have to get to a deal are historical.”