Iran, West hardly to sign nuclear deal in March – expert

Iran, West hardly to sign nuclear deal in March – expert

Baku, Azerbaijan, Nov.24

By Elmira Tariverdiyeva - Trend:

There is no optimism about signing of a nuclear deal between Iran and the West in March, chairman of Presidium of the Council on Foreign and Defense Policy, editor-in-chief of 'Russia in Global Affairs' magazine, Fyodor Lukyanov said on Nov.24.

He made the remarks during a press conference in Baku, Azerbaijan.

"Today is the last day of the negotiations on achieving a peace agreement between the West and Iran on the latter's nuclear program."

"The sides have already expressed their opinion that the deal will not be concluded today. Diplomatic sources of western media outlets presume that the signing of the agreement is likely to be postponed to March."

Lukyanov added that although formally Iran holds negotiations with P5+1 (the US, UK, Russia, France, China plus Germany), in fact these are the talks between Iran and the US. The rest of the participants will not be able to do anything unless Iran and the US reach a basic understanding and mutual trust, according to the expert.

Nevertheless, today neither Europe, nor Russia can force Iran and the US to trust each other, he added.

Lukyanov said it is not a catastrophe that the sides will almost certainly not be able to reach an agreement on this issue on Nov.24. Rapprochement between Iran and the US is a very difficult process and the main issue here is the perception of each other.

He said that there are few countries in the world having the same negative attitude of the US as towards Iran. It caused great offense to Washington by seizing the US embassy in 1979.

"Iran wants to come to an agreement with the West," he said. "However, Tehran wonders what Washington can actually do. Even if Barack Obama's administration signs any agreement, will it be able to implement it in terms of totally hostile Congress and anti-Iranian sentiment in the US establishment?

"Iran, especially the Supreme Leader, does not trust the West either," the expert said. "The failure of the talks will only aggravate the anti-Iranian sentiment."

"Moreover, Tehran reasonably believes that today the US needs Iran more rather than taking into account the situation in the Middle East, where it is more difficult for the US to conduct its policy without the support of allies," he said.

Iran and the "Six" (the five permanent members of the UN Security Council and Germany) failed a round of negotiations. The document will not be agreed upon within the period, TASS reported Nov. 24, citing a source in the negotiations.

"We failed to reach an agreement," he said. "The difference in the approaches has not been overcome yet."

"The extension of the negotiations is being discussed," he said. "Perhaps, this will take several months."

The negotiations over the country's nuclear program among Iran and the "Six" international mediators have been continuing in Vienna for the sixth day. According to the results of the previous negotiations, a deadline set for reaching a comprehensive agreement will expire on November 24.

Earlier, US Deputy National Security Adviser for President Tony Blinken said that Iran has a great responsibility for reaching an agreement in the nuclear negotiations.

Edited by CN

For any questions or feedback, follow the author on Twitter: @EmmaTariver

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