West Wasting Time With New Nuclear Demands

West Wasting Time With  New Nuclear Demands West Wasting Time With  New Nuclear Demands

Commenting on the new demands by some parties to the nuclear negotiations which go beyond what was agreed in the Lausanne talks, the chief nuclear negotiator said such moves are "futile" and "a waste of time."    

"I believe they are using negotiating strategies. The frameworks we agreed in Lausanne are perfectly clear and in my belief efforts by the western side (to press demands) beyond these frameworks are futile and a waste of time," Mohammad Javad Zarif said in an interview with Fars news agency published on Saturday.

Iran and the P5+1 (the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany) are negotiating to iron out the details of a final deal by a June 30 deadline, on whose outline the two sides reached an agreement, which was announced in a joint statement released on April 2 in the Swiss city of Lausanne.

"Now that we have reached the stage of drafting (the deal), the western side is probably attempting to achieve what they failed to secure during the substantive negotiations (before the Lausanne agreement) and this is not anything unusual," the foreign minister said.

Responding to a question on the same issue in an interview with Rossiya-24 television on Friday, Zarif had said, "The biggest problem we have is the need to make a political decision. The solution to this issue was agreed in Lausanne. All parties should understand that we can reach an agreement only in the framework of these solutions. Any attempts to revise the agreement will lead to failure."

  Content Matters   

Asked whether the negotiations will be extended in the event of failure to complete the annexes of the deal by the deadline, the foreign minister told Fars that "we have not yet discussed any extension. We believe if they do not deviate from the issues that we agreed on in Lausanne and on which we reached  some solutions, a deal will be likely (by the deadline)."

"As we have frequently said it is the content (of the deal) that matters to us and we do not consider ourselves bound by time, nor are we worried about it."

Deputy Foreign Ministers Abbas Araqchi and Majid Takht-Ravanchi sat down both separately and multilaterally with their European, Chinese and Russian counterparts to hold nuclear talks in Vienna on Thursday with the aim of drafting the text of the final accord.

The talks were preceded by a plenary meeting between Iran and their P5+1 counterparts on the same day. The deputy foreign ministers also held a meeting with US Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Wendy Sherman on Friday.

The expert-level talks between Iran and the P5+1 go on in parallel with discussions between political officials.

Araqchi and Takht-Ravanchi left Vienna for Tehran on Friday while the expert team, headed by the foreign ministry director general for political and international security affairs, Hamid Baeidinejad, was expected to stay in the Austrian capital to continue talks with their counterparts.  

Baeidinejad wrote on his twitter account on Thursday that as the powers have found discussions on the remaining issues "complicated" and "time-consuming", they have requested that a more intensive schedule be followed in the negotiations in the countdown to the deadline.