Iran, P5+1 technical talks to continue after new year holidays
Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec. 22
By Umid Niayesh - Trend:
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and the European Union's Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton agreed to continue technical talks between Iran and the P5+1 after New Year holidays, ISNA news agency reported on Dec 22.
Zarif phone talked with Ashton on Dec. 22 on differences in the current expert-level talks in Geneva.
Iran and P5+1 resumed expert-level talks in Geneva on Dec. 19 to work out how to put into practice a landmark deal obliging Tehran to curb its nuclear program in return for some relief from economic sanctions.
On November 24, Iran and the P5+1 reached a deal in Geneva after several days of intensive negotiations. The nuclear accord is designed to halt Iran's nuclear advances for a period of six months to buy time for negotiations on a final settlement of the decade-old standoff.
On Dec. 21, IRNA News Agency quoted Iranian deputy foreign minister, Abbas Araqchi as saying the latest round of technical talks between Iran and the P5+1 have made little progress.
The Geneva expert-level talks follow four days of similar discussions in Vienna last week.
Discussions on the implementation details of last month's breakthrough accord were interrupted by Tehran diplomats last week, after a decision by the United States to blacklist 19 more Iranian companies and individuals, Reuters reported.
U.S. officials have said the new blacklisting should not complicate the practical talks and are part of U.S. efforts to continue exposing those supporting Iran's nuclear program or seeking to evade current sanctions.
The U.S. and its Western allies suspect Iran of developing a nuclear weapon - something that Iran denies.
The Islamic Republic has on numerous occasions stated that it does not seek to develop nuclear weapons, using nuclear energy for medical research instead.