Iran’s FM set to hold talks on nuclear deal in Moscow

Iran’s FM set to hold talks on nuclear deal in Moscow

Iran’s FM set to hold talks on nuclear deal in Moscow

Alamy Photo

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian will head to Moscow today, Iran’s Foreign Ministry has said, days after negotiations on an Iran nuclear deal stalled amid new Russian demands.

Russia has made its official demands loud and clear, and this needs to be discussed among all parties to the 2015 agreement, like all the demands that have been presented by other parties,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh told reporters.

“The foreign ministers of the parties are in constant contact,” and Amirabdollahian “will go to Moscow to continue the discussions,” he added.

Months of talks in Vienna have brought major powers close to renewing the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) on regulating Iran’s nuclear program.

But the negotiations were halted after Russia on March 5 demanded guarantees that Western sanctions imposed following its invasion of Ukraine would not damage its trade with Iran.

On March 11, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell tweeted that the pause was “due to external factors,” despite the fact that “a final text is essentially ready and on the table.”

The U.S. then put the ball in Iran and Russia’s courts after the EU announcement.

“We are confident that we can achieve a mutual return to compliance. If those decisions are made in places like Tehran and Moscow,” U.S State Department spokesman Ned Price said.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken has dismissed as “irrelevant” the Russian demands for guarantees, saying that they “just are not in any way linked together.”

But yesterday, Iran’s foreign ministry spokesman repeated Tehran’s position that the move had to come from the United States.

“The remaining issues and points between us and the U.S. need political decisions in Washington,” Khatibzadeh said.