With five weeks to go before a final deadline to reach a nuclear deal between Iran and six big world powers, there’s concern that either side will compromise on their positions.
CCTV correspondent Sandra Gathmann reports from Vienna.
With a deadline looming to reach an international agreement on Iran’s nuclear program, talks between Iranian officials, the U.S., the UK, Germany, France, China and Russia saw some progress negotiators have, so far, agreed on a framework for a final draft to ensure Tehran cannot build a nuclear weapon.
Iranian officials on Friday said huge gaps remain. Key issues remain like reducing Iran’s stockpile of tens of thousands of centrifuges which Washington wants to reduce to the low thousands. It’s an effort to ensure Iran would be unable to quickly enrich its uranium capacity long after a deal is done. But Tehran is not prepared to drastically reduce its nuclear capabilities and wants to see other countries lift sanctions quickly.
Issues like how many centrifuges Iran must give up remain unresolved. Washington especially, wants to ensure Iran is unable to quickly enrich it’s uranium capacity long after a deal is done. But Tehran is not prepared to drastically reduce its nuclear capabilities and wants to see countries quickly lift sanctions.
On Friday, a report from the International Atomic Energy Agency said Iran is complying with its end of a December deal that saw some sanctions relaxed in exchange for Iran cutting back levels of uranium enrichment. Analysts, following the negotiations, say the success of that deal is a positive sign for talks moving forward.
With both sides saying they want to avoid an extension, talks are set to intensify in the coming weeks. Only five weeks are left until a July 20th deadline, and negotiators are edging closer to confronting the bigger more divisive issues. The next time they meet, in early July, will be a real test of political will to compromise in order to reach a deal.