Nuclear talks begin between Kerry, Iran's FM Zarif and EU's Ashton

The meeting is taking place just two weeks before Iran's self-imposed November 24 deadline for reaching a comprehensive nuclear deal.

By REUTERS
November 9, 2014 10:56
2 minute read.
Kerry and Iranian FM Zarif

US. Secretary of State Kerry and Iranian FM Zarif shake hands as Omani FM Alawi and EU envoy Ashton watch in Muscat.. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif began talks with US Secretary of State John Kerry and European Union envoy Catherine Ashton in Oman on Sunday to try to advance efforts to end a standoff over Tehran's nuclear program, a witness said.

The discussions, aimed at curbing Iran's sensitive uranium enrichment work in return for a gradual lifting of sanctions, are taking place just two weeks before a self-imposed November 24 deadline for reaching a comprehensive deal. Iranian official media also reported the start of the Muscat talks.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


The West suspects Iran has covertly sought to develop the means to build nuclear weapons, but the Islamic Republic says its programme is entirely for peaceful purposes.

The thorniest unresolved issues are Iran's overall uranium enrichment capacity, the length of any long-term agreement and the pace at which international sanctions would be phased out, according to Western diplomats involved in the negotiations.

As Kerry arrived in Oman early on Sunday, a senior US official said the three-way talks would be "an important meeting," with the focus on making progress in order to meet the deadline.

US officials say major gaps still remain in the two sides' negotiating position. Kerry said last week that the United States and its partners were not contemplating an extension of the November 24 deadline, although he held out the possibility that negotiations could go beyond that date if major issues were agreed and there were only technical details to wrap up.

Speaking to Iranian state television on his arrival in Muscat on Saturday night, Zarif reiterated that sanctions imposed on Iran had brought 'no result' for the West.



"We need to reach a solution based on mutual respect and cooperation. If the West is interested in reaching such a solution, there is possibility to find a solution and to reach an understanding before November 24," he said.

A senior Iranian official close to the talks told Reuters that the participants would discuss "the gaps that are still huge, Iran's (uranium) enrichment capacity and timeframe of lifting sanctions."

The Wall Street Journal reported on Thursday that US President Barack Obama sent Khamenei a letter suggesting cooperation in the fight against Islamic State.

The letter also reportedly said that the combating the terror group was tied to a deal being reached between Iran and other nations on its nuclear program.

Related Content

August 16, 2018
'Queen of Soul' Aretha Franklin dies at home in Detroit aged 76

By REUTERS