Iran’s foreign minister on Saturday called for a “realistic response” from the United States to Iranian proposals at talks in Vienna with the hope of reviving the 2015 Iranian nuclear deal (JCPOA) state media reported. Indirect talks between the United States and Iran started on Thursday.
In 2018, then U.S. President Donald Trump ended the agreement and reimposed sanctions on Iran. Tehran responded by breaching the agreement and rebuilding stocks of enriched uranium. Iran has always maintained that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes.
In a phone conversation with U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Sunday Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian said that Iran does not seek nuclear weapons.
A sticking point in the talks to revive the pact may be over Iran’s refusal to address alleged unexplained uranium traces as demanded by the U.N. nuclear watchdog (IAEA). Tehran insists that the deal had cleared its nuclear program of any possible military uses. Iran was censured by the IAEA on June 8th over its failure to explain excess nuclear enrichment and for removing monitoring cameras in its production facilities.
The European parties involved in the negotiations want Iran to stop making unrealistic demands outside the scope of the nuclear deal.
“The text is on the table. There will be no re-opening of negotiations. Iran must now decide to conclude the deal while this is still possible,” a European statement said.
In June it was reported by Reuters that Iran had dropped a demand to remove the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps from a U.S. list of sanctioned organizations. This had been a chief issue on why the previous round of negotiations had failed.