EU's Mogherini: Nuclear Deal at Hand

EU's Mogherini: Nuclear Deal at HandEU's Mogherini: Nuclear Deal at Hand

The European Union's foreign policy chief said an Iran nuclear deal was "at hand" and urged different sides to show political will ahead of a new round of talks scheduled to be held in Geneva next week.

"We cannot miss this opportunity," Federica Mogherini, who represents the EU when the talks between Iran and the P5+1 (the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany) are held at the level of foreign ministers, said on Tuesday at Chatham House, a think tank in London.

"A good deal is at hand if the parties will keep cooperating as they did so far and if we have enough political will from all sides to agree on a good deal and sell it domestically," AFP quoted Mogherini as saying.

"We have a series of internal domestic political dynamics we have to handle with care," she said, listing "tensions" in the US Congress, Israel's elections and regional rivalries in the Middle East.

"A comprehensive agreement would be mutually beneficial for all sides," she said.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed earlier in the day to do all he could to thwart a "bad deal" from going through, saying the agreement being formulated would allow Iran to produce nuclear weapons.

Iran denies its nuclear program may have any military objectives, saying the work is solely for peaceful applications, including electricity generation. Tehran has also called on the international community to take action to compel the Israeli regime to address concerns over its nuclear arsenal.

The so-called P5+1 group of Britain, China, France, Russia, the United States and Germany are trying to strike a comprehensive accord with Iran that would place constraints on Tehran's nuclear activities for a specified period of time in exchange for the phasing out of sanctions. They are set to work out the basic framework of a long-term settlement to the 12-year dispute over Iran's nuclear program ahead a June 30 deadline for a final deal.