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                                        Volume. 12021

France firm to continue ‘difficult and complex’ nuclear talks with Iran
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c_330_235_16777215_0___images_stories_edim_02_am1(356).jpgA senior French official said on Friday that Paris is determined to pursue “serious, but difficult and complex” talks with Iran to try to get a comprehensive agreement on Iran’s nuclear program and obtain guarantees about the purely civilian application of nuclear technology by Tehran, the Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) reported. 
 
Iran and the 5+1 group (the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany) held an intense round of nuclear talks in Vienna from June 16 to 20. 
 
The current process of negotiations between Iran and the six major powers are meant to build on a landmark interim nuclear deal they clinched last November in Geneva. 
 
Under the Geneva deal, Iran agreed not to expand its nuclear program for six months in exchange for limited sanctions relief. The agreement came into force on January 20. Iran and the major powers have set a July 20 deadline to clinch a long-term comprehensive nuclear deal. The deadline can be extended by another half year if both sides agree.   
 
The next round of talks is scheduled to begin on July 2 in the Austrian capital.
 
“We are determined with our partners in the ‘Six’ to arrive at a long-term solution to ascertain the exclusively-peaceful end use of the Iranian program,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Romain Nadal said in answer to KUNA questions.
 
“We continue to expect from Iran that it rapidly take the necessary decisions with a view to a credible, complete and lasting agreement,” he said.
 
“These talks are continuing. They are serious. They are difficult and, with our partners, we have never hidden this,” he said.
 
Nadal also said that the French position is based on the quality of the agreement and the duration of the process is not the issue. 
 
“Concerning a timetable for the end of these discussions...what is important is not the end date of the talks but the content,” Nadal said.
 
He went on to say that the agreement with Iran “must reassure the international community on the finality of Iran’s nuclear program.” 
 
Nadal added that the conditions are now different because of the interim agreement reached between Iran and the major power last November. 
 
He also indicated that there is a new “dynamic” in the talks compared with previous fruitless negotiations.
 
“The context was different (then),” Nadal said, adding, “There was a period when the negotiations failed because Iran gave no guarantee and did not engage in clear, transparent cooperation with the IAEA and did not respect its international obligations.”
 
“That was the past. Last autumn, an interim agreement was concluded. We are now in the dynamic of the signing of that agreement...and in the dynamic of negotiations that are now serious. Iran has now engaged in serious talks,” the official added.   
 
AM/PA

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