Iran

Iran nuclear talks to resume on September 18, says EU official

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Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany will resume negotiations over a final deal on Tehran’s nuclear energy program in New York on September 18, the European Union says.

Michael Mann, spokesman for EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, said on Tuesday that the nuclear negotiations between Iran and the six countries – Russia, China, France, Britain, the United States and Germany – will “continue in New York as of September 18,” AFP reported.

The new round of talks will be held on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly.

According to Mann, Iran and its negotiating sides will also hold preparatory meetings in Vienna and Geneva with similar but smaller groupings of officials in attendance ahead of the September 18 talks.

Ashton’s spokesman also stated that senior diplomats from France, Britain and Germany would hold a separate round of talks with Iranians officials in Vienna on September 11.

Earlier on Thursday, representatives from Iran and the United States kicked off bilateral negotiations over the Islamic Republic’s nuclear energy program in Geneva.

On September 1, Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and Ashton, who represents the six countries, met in Brussels, Belgium, to discuss the process of the ongoing nuclear talks.

Following the negotiations with Ashton, the Iranian foreign minister said he is optimistic that the issues related to the Iranian nuclear energy program “can be resolved in time” within the November 24 deadline.

Iran and its negotiating sides are currently in talks to work out a lasting accord aimed at ending the longstanding dispute over Tehran’s civilian nuclear activities.

Last November, the two sides signed an interim deal in Geneva, which took effect on January 20 and expired six months later on July 20. In July, Tehran and the six countries agreed to extend negotiations until November 24 after they failed to reach common ground on a number of key issues.

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