Vienna talks highly likely to be completed in next round: Russian diplomat

June 26, 2021 - 20:52

TEHRAN – Russia’s envoy to the Vienna nuclear talks has said the next round of talks will highly likely result in a completion of nuclear negotiations on how to revive the 2015 Iran nuclear deal.

Responding to a Twitter user’s question on the likelihood of concluding the talks during the next round, Mikhail Ulyanov tweeted, “Chances to complete the Vienna Talks on JCPOA successfully during the seventh round seem to be high but you never know for sure in advance. The negotiators aim at fulfilling their tasks without delay. However, the quality of an outcome document comes first.”

Negotiations over reviving the nuclear deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), have been underway since April. So far, six rounds of talks have been held with all sides hailing progress made during the talks.

The Russian diplomat also said that the main goal of the Vienna talks is to revive the JCPOA in its original format. “Our aim is to restore the original JCPOA - nothing more or less. This goal is fully achievable,” he noted.

Earlier on Friday, he said the Vienna talks will resume next week as top diplomats are poised to return to the Austrian capital for the seventh round of talks. "My instinct tells me that the Vienna Talks on restoration of JCPOA will resume next week, i.e. no later than July 4 or - most probably - earlier. This is not for sure but highly likely. Let’s see,” Mikhail Ulyanov said on Twitter.

Nuclear negotiators from Iran and the remaining parties to the Iran nuclear deal have returned to their capitals after concluding the sixth round of talks last week. Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister Seyed Abbas Araqchi, who leads the Iranian negotiating team in Vienna, said the negotiators made progress during the sixth round particularly in terms of preparing the draft of the agreement. He said the remaining important issues required serious decisions in the capitals, especially in the negotiating countries.

The top Iranian nuclear negotiator also hailed the progress made during the last round of talks in remarks to the Iranian state TV.

“Our progress in this round has been relatively good, because a large number of texts are ready now, and the amount that is not ready has at least one very clear situation, and it shows a picture of the differences and what stage (the differences) are in, and this helps decision makers make the right decision. We have come a long way so far and we are nearing the end, but the rest of the way, as I said before, will not be an easy one,” he said, adding, “I hope and I think that if the other parties can make their own decisions, God willing, we will be able to reach an agreement that we want. Our positions have not changed since the beginning of the talks, and we want all U.S. sanctions to be lifted, as well as their verification and then Iran will return to its commitments under the JCPOA.”

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday that the main issues in the Vienna talks on the revival of the 2015 nuclear deal have been settled, noting it is now possible to have the sanctions lifted right away.

Speaking at a cabinet meeting, Rouhani said his administration has done a great job by overcoming the “economic war” launched by Donald Trump on Iran.

Highlighting his administration’s success in bringing the U.S. to the negotiation table in Vienna and resolving major issues, Rouhani pointed out that if there is a will and if Iran’s top negotiator in the Vienna talks, Abbas Araqchi, is given the necessary authority, the administration would be able to have the sanctions lifted “today.”

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