Iran examines US response to nuclear deal as Qatar negotiates | Political news

A media outlet affiliated with Iran’s security apparatus reports that an Iranian response is not expected until at least Friday.

Tehran, Iran – Iran says its review of the United States’ response to a text drafted by the European Union to restore their 2015 nuclear deal will take several more days as Qatar continues to mediate between the parties.

Expert-level review of the US response is ongoing and will take “at least” until the end of the week, Nournews, a media outlet affiliated with Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, said in a tweet on Sunday. .

The working week in Iran ends on Friday, so a response seems unlikely before September 2.

Iran had sent its response to the European text earlier this month, and Washington submitted its own comments on the text on Wednesday, more than a week after the Iranian response.

EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell called both responses “reasonable” and said he planned to hold more meetings in Vienna to finalize a deal if possible.

Meanwhile, Qatar – which hosted a series of two-day indirect talks between Tehran and Washington mediated by the EU in late June – continued to mediate and relay messages between the parties.

According to the Qatari Foreign Ministry, Deputy Foreign Minister for Regional Affairs Mohammed bin Abdulaziz bin Saleh Al-Khulaifi met with Iran’s chief negotiator Ali Bagheri Kani in Tehran on Saturday to discuss the talks.

Al-Khulaifi “stressed the importance of going further in order to revive the nuclear agreement which is in the interest of the security and stability of the region”, said a statement from the Foreign Ministry.

The Qatari official then had a phone call with the EU’s Enrique Mora, who acts as coordinator of the nuclear talks.

Iran has neither reported nor commented on the meeting with the Qatari official.

The United States unilaterally abandoned the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), as the agreement is officially known, in 2018 and imposed severe sanctions which are currently in effect.

In response, Iran accelerated its nuclear program to its most advanced stages, but maintained that it was not seeking a nuclear weapon.

If an agreement is reached, hundreds of sanctions should be lifted and Tehran should once again agree to limit its nuclear program, including enrichment and uranium stockpiles.

Iranian and US officials have not officially commented on the details of the negotiations, but two outstanding issues are believed to have remained unresolved.

One concerns Iran’s demands for guarantees that it will receive the economic benefits promised under the original deal, and the other concerns a standoff over unexplained nuclear particles found at several Iranian nuclear sites.

Last week, Rafael Grossi, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), repeatedly called on Iran to cooperate fully with the nuclear watchdog to resolve the problem of nuclear particles discovered there. several years ago.

Iran has stressed that it wants the IAEA probe permanently shut down before a deal can be reached to reinstate the JCPOA.

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