“We are committed to ensuring that the process that we started … will lead to a satisfactory conclusion that would address the requirements as stated in the [Geneva interim] agreement,” Zarif said in an interview with The Washington Post on Sunday.
The Iranian foreign minister noted that the objective of the nuclear talks is “to have an enrichment program in Iran” while at the same time removing concerns over Tehran’s nuclear program and imposed sanctions.
“…We believe it is very easy to reach an agreement. Of course it requires serious political will and good faith in order to reach that agreement,” he added.
Zarif also described a recent statement issued by the US Departments of Treasury and State, putting new sanctions against Iranian companies and individuals as “extremely counterproductive” and against the “very aim of the negotiations.”
However, “that does not mean that negotiations are dead. That means negotiations have hit a snag,” he said, adding “I believe we need to have a reassessment of how we want to proceed — everybody needs to do that — go back to the negotiating table with a view to removing these obstacles and moving forward.”
Iran’s top diplomat said Tehran would continue negotiations in good faith, with political will and determination to reach a final agreement, “which we believe will be in the interests of everybody, and all efforts to undermine it should cease, because they are only counterproductive.”
On Thursday, the US Departments of Treasury announced new sanctions against a number of companies and individuals for “providing support for” Iran’s nuclear energy program.
The new US sanctions came despite the nuclear deal inked between Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council – Russia, China, France, Britain and the US – plus Germany in the Swiss city of Geneva on November 24.
The interim deal sought to set the stage for the full resolution of the West’s decade-old dispute with Iran over the country’s nuclear energy program.