Baku, Azerbaijan, Dec. 30
By Umid Niayesh - Trend:
Iran and the P5+1(the US, Russia, France, China, Britain and Germany) started the third round of expert-level talks in Geneva, on Dec. 30 in a bid to talk over the mechanisms for implementing the interim nuclear deal struck last month, Fars news agency reported.
Hamid Baeidinejad, the director general for political and international affairs at Iran's Foreign Ministry, is leading the Iranian delegation which includes experts from nuclear, banking, oil and transportation sectors.
Stephen Clement, who is an aide to EU Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton, is heading the experts team of the six world powers.
During a phone talk on December 22, 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.
Earlier this month, Iran and the six world powers held four days of talks in Geneva without any progress. The first experts meeting was held in Vienna, on December 9.
The Vienna negotiations among experts were scheduled to continue until December 13, but the Iranian negotiators cut short the talks and returned to Iran after a decision by the United States to blacklist 19 more Iranian companies and individual.
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.
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.
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.