Last-ditch talks between Tehran and the EU are to be held to try to resolve the escalating crisis over the Islamic Republic’s atomic programme. News of the meeting came from Iran’s top nuclear negotiator Ali Larijani who has been in Moscow discussing a Russian proposal to break the deadlock.
Though those talks do not appear to have made much headway, this next round of negotiations to be held in Vienna on Friday might offer a final chance. But there are reports that the EU troika – France, Britain, and Germany – has no new proposals to put forward. If there is no breakthrough there, the International Atomic Agency, which is meeting on Monday, could report Iran to the UN Security Council for possible sanctions. Western fears over Iran’s nuclear ambitions have been stoked by Tehran restarting its uranium enrichment programme. Though that is a crucial step towards building an atomic bomb, Iran denies it has any intention of making such a weapon. It says it is pursuing its nuclear programme purely for civilian energy needs.