Apr 25, 2021 18:18 UTC
  • Iran will not allow attritional talks in Vienna, will exit if other sides not serious: Araqchi

Iran’s top negotiator in Vienna talks on the revival of the 2015 nuclear deal says Tehran will not allow negotiations to take long, and will leave the talks if it feels the other parties lack seriousness and only seek to buy time or wish to add other issues to the talks.

“One cannot predict a specific deadline [for the talks], but we will not let the negotiations become attritional,” Abbas Araqchi said on Sunday, echoing earlier remarks by Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei, after attending a meeting of the Parliament’s Committee on National Security and Foreign Policy on the ongoing talks that began early this month in the Austrian capital.

“At the same time, we are not in a rush, because there are serious issues being discussed during the talks, which need to be carefully examined,” said Araqchi, who also serves as Iran’s deputy foreign minister for political affairs.

Araqchi: Step-for-step plan discarded a long time ago

Elsewhere in his remarks, Araqchi underlined that a step-for-step plan for the removal of US sanctions on Iran has been discarded a long time ago, saying that Iran rejected the proposal long before the talks began.

"The step-for-step plan is not a matter of discussion at all in the current talks... Tehran’s position is completely clear," Araqchi said, adding that the US sanctions must be removed first, followed by Iran’s verification of the sanctions removal, and only then, Iran will return to its nuclear commitments under the JCPOA.

“We have insisted on this issue and the representatives [of other parties to the JCPOA] were fully briefed in this regard,” the senior diplomat said.

Iran’s top negotiator said, “There are challenges ahead of the talks. Of course, we are now on a path, which can bear fruit, but it is early to say whether we would be able to overcome all challenges and hurdles. Therefore, I cannot say that we are optimistic or pessimistic, but we are not desperate and stick to our duty.”