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People's Daily Online

Iran starts separate nuclear talks with powers: spokeswoman

People's Daily Online

(Xinhua) 19:00, June 11, 2014

Iran has started its separate intensive nuclear talks with the members of P5+1 group 'to make much of time' and 'to narrow down the gaps between the sides,' Iran's Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Marzieh Afkham said here on Wednesday.

The purpose of the talks is to make much of the time before the upcoming high-level negotiations between Iran and the P5+1 group -- Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States plus Germany - - which will begin in Vienna next week, the spokeswoman said at her weekly press briefing.

Over the past two days, Iran and the U.S. negotiators held talks over Iran's nuclear issue, Afkham said, adding that 'the talks were entirely focused on Iran's nuclear issue as they were plain, transparent and serious.'

'I think, accepting realities is the main component of ongoing trend (vis-a-vis Iran's nuclear program), and the negotiating sides should move in a direction to make tough decisions so that Iran's nuclear rights could be respected and established,' she said.

Iran and the United States still disagree on key issues concerning the Islamic republic's nuclear program, but the atmosphere of the discussion was 'positive,' Iran's senior nuclear negotiator Abbas Araqchi said after two days of direct talks between Iranian and U.S. negotiators concluded in Geneva on Tuesday.

'We had good exchange of views, which was helpful before the next round of (high-level) nuclear talks in Vienna,' Araqchi said.

'The talks were intensive and difficult but were conducted in a positive atmosphere,' he was quoted as saying by official IRNA news agency. 'In spite of good exchange of views, differences still remain,' he added.

A new round of high-ranking nuclear meetings between the Islamic republic and major world powers will be held in Vienna next Monday.

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