Iran, P5+1 kick off fresh nuclear talks in Geneva
Iran Press TV
Sun Jan 18, 2015 1:9PM
A new round of talks between Iran and six world powers over Tehran's nuclear program has kicked off in the Swiss city of Geneva.
The meeting, which is at the level of deputy foreign ministers, started on Sunday at 11 a.m. local time (1000 GMT) at the United Nations office in Geneva.
The negotiations came a day after Iran's foreign minister deputies Seyyed Abbas Araqchi and Majid Takht-e-Ravanchi held talks with Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov and Helga Schmid, the deputy of the EU foreign policy chief.
Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, meanwhile, has held four rounds of talks with US Secretary of State John Kerry over the past three days.
Zarif also held talks with the German and French foreign ministers, during which he urged his European counterparts to play a more active role in the final phases of the negotiations.
The top Iranian diplomat in a phone conversation with British Foreign Secretary PhilipHammond discussed the latest developments related to the negotiations.
Zarif said on Saturday that an agreement on Iran's nuclear program could only be signed when Western countries stop exerting pressure on Tehran.
"If Western countries intend to negotiate with Iran, they should make a political decision, which might be difficult for some, and cease applying pressure," he said on Iranian television.
Iran and the six states - the US, the UK, France, China, Russia and Germany - wrapped up their latest round of nuclear talks in Geneva on December 17, 2014, three weeks after they failed to reach a final agreement by a November 24 deadline despite making some progress.
The two sides agreed to extend their discussions for seven more months until July 1, 2015.
The scale of Iran's uranium enrichment and the timetable for the lifting of anti-Iran sanctions are seen as major sticking points in the talks.
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