Three days of intense negotiations between Iran and Western powers have concluded without a deal. The talks will reconvene on November 20.
EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton stressed that “concrete progress” had been made, as she sat beside Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif at a closing press conference.
Zarif told reporters: “I’m not disappointed at all because it was a good meeting and I think that we’re all on the same wavelength – and that is important and that gives us the impetus to go forward when we meet again next time.”
The West has long suspected that Iran could be working to develop a nuclear weapon – an accusation denied by Tehran. The row led to international sanctions, which have crippled the Iranian economy.
US Secretary of State John Kerry said the gap between the two sides was starting to narrow, telling reporters: “There is no question in my mind that we are closer now, as we leave Geneva, than we were when we came and that, with good work and good faith over the next weeks, we can, in fact, secure our goal.”
France’s Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius voiced some scepticism on the final day of talks, saying Paris was committed to reaching an agreement, but many questions remained.