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Iran says to return to Vienna nuclear talks

Iran’s foreign minister says talks will be based on same format followed by previous gov’t

Syed Zafar Mehdi   | 27.10.2021
Iran says to return to Vienna nuclear talks

TEHRAN, Iran

Iran said Wednesday it will return to the Vienna nuclear talks soon, based on the same format followed by the previous Iranian government.

Speaking to reporters in Tehran on the sidelines of a summit on Afghanistan, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian said the talks, however, will not resume from the point where they left off in July, suggesting a radically different roadmap in future talks.

The top diplomat said the decision on returning to the Vienna talks will be taken after assessing the discussions between Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Ali Bagheri and European Union's Deputy Foreign Policy Chief Enrique Mora in Brussels.

He again urged the US government to lift sanctions for any breakthrough in the talks.

Bagheri said earlier Wednesday that Iran will return to the Vienna nuclear talks before the end of November.

Bagheri, who is tipped be the new lead negotiator for Iran, replacing former Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Aragchi, held talks with Mora in Tehran earlier this month.

Iran's foreign ministry had termed the talks "good and constructive" and stressed that the meeting in Brussels between the two officials could be a "step forward" in resuming the stalled talks in Vienna.

The talks to revive the 2015 nuclear deal have been stalled since the new government took over in Tehran in July, which has spoken of adopting a different approach in negotiations with the Western countries.

Raisi's conservative administration has adopted a tough line on talks with the US, making it conditional to the Biden administration lifting sanctions on Iran.

In an interview with state TV last week, Raisi called for "result-oriented negotiations" with the West, while urging the US to lift "unjust sanctions".

Washington, on the other hand, has maintained that Iran must return to the negotiating table and return to full compliance with the 2015 nuclear deal.

The former US administration in May 2018 unilaterally withdrew from the nuclear deal signed between Iran and the world powers in July 2015, followed by a reinstatement of sanctions.

Since 2019, Iran has taken a series of measures to scale back its commitments under the deal, including ramping up nuclear enrichment activities, sparking concerns in the international community.

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