There are still some “important” gaps that need to be bridged between Iran and the group of six world countries over the final text of a possible comprehensive nuclear deal, says an informed source close to the Iranian negotiating team.
“Although some parentheses (gaps) have been removed, important ones still remain,” IRNA quoted the source as saying on Thursday.
The comments came after Russian Deputy Foreign Minister and senior negotiator Sergei Ryabkov said on Thursday that Iran and the P5+1 group of countries have worked out almost 90 percent of the text of a final deal on Tehran’s nuclear program.
The Iranian source said that remarks quoted from different sources on the progress made in writing the text of a final deal could be neither confirmed nor rejected.
“It is true that some progress has been made in removing parentheses and a considerable part of the text has been cleared from them, but the remaining parentheses in the text are all indicative of key sticking points,” the source said.
On Monday, senior Iranian negotiator Abbas Araqchi said that representatives from the two sides are working on the text of a final deal at various levels.
“The text of the deal is a complicated one, which has different technical, legal and, above all, political dimensions. The text must undergo full reviews, first at the level of experts and later at the level of deputy foreign ministers,” Araqchi said.
Araqchi, who is also Iran’s deputy foreign minister for international and legal affairs, said differences over certain areas are more serious and demand more deliberation.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif is due in the Austrian city of Vienna on Saturday to join the country’s negotiating team.
US Secretary of State John Kerry will also fly to Vienna on Friday to attend the talks, the State Department has said.
Representatives from Iran and the P5+1 group – the US, the UK, France, China and Russia plus Germany – are holding extensive talks to finalize the text of a possible deal over Tehran’s nuclear program by the end of June.
The two sides seek to seal a comprehensive deal based on a mutual understanding on the key parameters agreed upon in the Swiss city of Lausanne on April 2.