US sees bilateral Iran talks as key to progress in nuclear talks

Photo: US sees bilateral Iran talks as key to progress in nuclear talks / Nuclear Program

The United States regards bilateral Iran talks as crucial to making progress on a final nuclear agreement, a senior American government official said Wednesday, IRNA reported.

Pointing to an 80-minute bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the Vienna II nuclear talks, the official hailed it as ˈgood and productive,ˈ saying such talks have somehow become ˈroutine.ˈ

The official stressed the bilateral talks have become an ˈimportant elementˈ to help move the process forward.

ˈThere are no histrionics, there is no walking out, there is no yelling and screaming. It is very professional, very workmanlike.ˈ

While the US official reiterated the commitment to reach a deal with Iran during the six-month deadline, the American side cautioned also that ˈhard workˈ was needed to agree on uranium enrichment.

ˈItˈs a gap (on enrichment) thatˈs going to take some hard work to get to a place where we can find agreement.ˈ

The offical said expert-level talks would also address this issue when they meet in Vienna from April 3-5.

Washington views all the key issues on Tehranˈs program as inter-related, the official reiterated.

Iran knows what we hope for and we know what they hope for, said the official.

The goal is to have a final comprehensive deal in which the international community is assured that Iran is not seeking nuclear weapons and Tehranˈs nuclear program is exclusively peaceful.

Meanwhile, the American official thanked Iranˈs Supreme Leader Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei for issuing a Fatwa banning nuclear weapons.

ˈWe appreciate ... that Iranˈs Supreme Leader has issued a Fatwa saying in fact it was not to be that Iran have a nuclear weapon. We appreciate that within the Iranian system this has a tremendous meaning and we respect that the Supreme.

That notwithstanding, the US needs concrete actions by Iran that are verifiable and monitored and can be seen, added the official.

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