[QODLink]
Europe

World powers and Iran start nuclear talks

Negotiators hope to reach agreement that trims Iran's nuclear activities in exchange for end to sanctions.

Last updated: 18 Mar 2014 10:38
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback

Talks between Iran and six world powers aimed at agreeing a lasting nuclear deal have resumed in Vienna. 

The two sides hope to reach an agreement by July that trims Iran's nuclear activities in exchange for an end to sanctions choking Tehran's economy.

Tuesday's negotiations are the second in monthly meetings on a comprehensive deal.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohamad Javad Zarif is leading his country's delegation, while EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton negotiates at least formally on behalf of the United States, Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany.

Iranian media said Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif had cancelled a customary pre-talks dinner with Ashton on Monday evening. The official IRNA news agency quoted sources as saying it was because of Ashton's "undiplomatic" behaviour, an apparent reference to her meeting Iranian human rights activists during her first visit to Tehran 10 days ago.

Iran has long denied accusations from Western powers and Israel that it has sought to develop the capability to produce
atomic weapons under the cover of its declared civilian nuclear energy programme.

In November, Iran and the six powers struck an interim deal under which Tehran has since shelved higher-grade uranium
enrichment - a potential path to atomic bombs - and obtained modest relief from punitive economic sanctions in return.

That six-month pact was designed to buy time for hammering out a final settlement by a July deadline, under which the West wants Iran to significantly scale back its nuclear programme to deny it the capability to devise a nuclear weapon any time soon.

Zarif, who will lead Tehran's delegation, said he expects a trickier round of talks this week than the previous meeting in
mid-February as the two sides try to iron out details such as Iran's Arak heavy water reactor and levels of uranium enrichment. 

286

Source:
Agencies
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Featured on Al Jazeera
More than one-quarter of Gaza's population has been displaced, causing a humanitarian crisis.
Ministers and MPs caught on camera sleeping through important speeches have sparked criticism that they are not working.
Muslim charities claim discrimination after major UK banks began closing their accounts.
Italy struggles to deal with growing flood of migrants willing to risk their lives to reach the nearest European shores.
Featured
Assam officials upset that WWII-era Stillwell Road won't be used in transnational highway linking four Asian nations.
Informal health centres are treating thousands of Syrian refugees in Turkey, easing the pressure on local hospitals.
Indonesian and Malaysian authorities are keeping a close eye on local supporters of the hard-line Middle East group.
Wastewater ponds dot the landscape in US states that produce gas; environmentalists say they’re a growing threat.
China President Xi Jinping's Mongolia visit brings accords in the areas of culture, energy, mining and infrastructure.
join our mailing list