Political Will Needed to seal Deal

Political Will Needed to seal Deal
Political Will Needed to seal Deal

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has described his discussions with EU envoy Catherine Ashton in Austrian capital Vienna on Tuesday as "positive", saying the outcome of nuclear talks between Iran and the major powers depends on "political will".   

Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi also said after Zarif's working launch with Ashton that Tehran has provided the P5+1 (the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany) with various proposals, adding, "If they really want to ease their concerns, those (proposals) would be sufficient," the Fars news agency reported.  

Senior diplomats from Iran and the P5+1 have gathered in Vienna for the last round of negotiations to reach a final deal to resolve the dispute over Tehran's nuclear program that has dragged on for over a decade now.

***Chances High

Upon arrival in Vienna, Zarif said the chances that a deal can be clinched are high, provided that the other party sets aside its "excessive" demands.

The top diplomat said, “If we don’t get a result because of excessive demands by the other side, then the world will understand that the Islamic Republic sought a solution, a compromise and a constructive agreement and that it will not relinquish its rights and the greatness of the nation,” IRNA reported.    


Reuters quoted British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond on Tuesday as saying that a nuclear agreement between Iran and the six major powers – the United States, Russia, China, France, Britain and Germany - can be reached by the November 24 deadline, but Tehran needs to show more flexibility in negotiations.

"I believe a deal can be done," Hammond said following a London meeting with US Secretary of State John Kerry. "But we will not do a bad deal. These negotiations are extremely tough and Iran needs to show more flexibility if we are to succeed."

In addition, US Under Secretary of State Wendy Sherman said at a Senate hearing on Iran's nuclear talks that "Our intent is absolutely to end this on November 24 in the first direction or the other."    


Iran and its negotiating partners are in talks to build on an interim accord they reached in Geneva last November to work out a long-term settlement to the nuclear dispute.             

The Geneva deal took effect on January 20 and was to expire six months later. However, Iran and the major powers agreed in July to extend their talks on a comprehensive agreement and continue implementing the interim accord four for more months as they remained divided on a number of key issues.

****Most Likely Scenario

However, despite nearly a year of talks, Iranian and Western officials have told Reuters that the deadline is unlikely to be met, and an extension is the most likely scenario.

Officials from the two sides say it is possible to agree the outline of a future agreement over the next week, but that the details would need months to be worked out. A new interim deal may also be possible.

The future scope of Iran's uranium enrichment capacity and the speed at which the sanctions would be lifted are among the thorniest issues in the talks.

The West has claimed that Iran may have been seeking to develop the capability to build nuclear weapons under the guise of a civilian nuclear program. Tehran denies the allegation, saying its nuclear work is meant only for peaceful purposes, such as power generation.

The foreign minister has said that there are various proposals on the table to ensure that Iran's nuclear program is purely peaceful.

As for sanctions, the West has offered gradual easing of anti-Iran sanctions; however, Tehran wants the immediate lifting of them.