With Monday’s deadline for Iran’s nuclear talks with the West looming the idea of an extension to March is being floated as sharp differences remain.
Officials close to the Vienna talks say the main sticking points remain the timing of sanctions being lifted, and Iran refusing a 20-year deal, preferring a lot shorter one.
“Iran has not provided any explanations nor enabled the agency to
clarify any outstanding practical measures nor has it proposed any new
practical measures in the next step of the framework for cooperation despite several requests from the agency,” said the Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency Yukiya Amano.
The UN says Iran has still not provided any clear information on its alleged bomb-making activities, one of the key conditions for sanctions to be lifted, but no-one wants the talks to collapse.
“Yes we do want to get an agreement but it’s just not any agreement. It has to be an agreement that works, that achieves the goal of guaranteeing that the pathways to a bomb will not and cannot be used,” said US Secretary of State John Kerry before flying to Vienna for the deadline.
Iran also wants no limits on its uranium enrichment process. Twelve years after this dispute began its power to impact on regional and global politics remains as unpredictable as ever, one reason all sides appear ready for a delay.