UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has called on the countries involved in negotiations on Iran’s nuclear energy program to do their best for the successful culmination of the talks.
“On the occasion of the resumption of talks between the P5+1 and the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Secretary-General calls on all participants to demonstrate the necessary flexibility, wisdom and determination to bring the negotiations to a successful conclusion that meets the concerns and interests of all sides,” a spokesperson for the UN chief said in a statement issued in New York on Thursday.
Iran and the P5+1 group of world powers – the US, France, Britain, Russia, China and Germany – continued their talks in Vienna on Thursday to work out a final deal aimed at ending the longstanding standoff over the Islamic Republic’s nuclear energy program before a November 24 deadline.
“The Secretary-General hopes that reaching a mutually-acceptable and comprehensive agreement will restore confidence in the peaceful nature of Iran’s nuclear program,” the statement said, adding, “He is convinced that such an accord can contribute to the strengthening of regional and international peace and security at a time when global cooperation is needed perhaps more than ever.”
US Secretary of State John Kerry arrived in Vienna Thursday for high-level negotiations on Iran’s nuclear energy program, insisting that the talks were focused on a deal before the November 24 deadline.
Sources close to the Iranian negotiating team say the main stumbling block in the way of resolving the dispute over Iran’s nuclear energy program remains to be the removal of all the bans imposed on the country, and not the number of centrifuges or the level of uranium enrichment.
Tehran wants the sanctions entirely lifted while Washington, under pressure from the pro-Israeli lobby, insists that at least the UN-imposed sanctions should remain in place.