Brinken says nuclear talks with Iran “cannot go on indefinitely” | Nuclear Weapons News
After six rounds of indirect talks in Vienna to restore the agreement broken by former US President Donald Trump, no breakthrough was achieved.
U.S. Secretary of State Anthony Brinken said that negotiations will be held on returning to the United States. Iran Nuclear Agreement “Cannot continue indefinitely,” but Washington is “fully prepared” to continue negotiations.
Since April, the United States has been in indirect negotiations with Iran, and the other parties to the 2015 agreement — Britain, France, Germany, the European Union, Russia, and China — acted as intermediaries in Vienna.
The so-called Joint Comprehensive Action Plan (JCPOA) allowed Iran to get some relief from international sanctions in exchange for restrictions on its nuclear program. The agreement was undermined by the then U.S. President Donald Trump in 2018, who unilaterally withdrew from the agreement and imposed punitive sanctions.
“We are committed to diplomacy, but this process cannot be carried out indefinitely,” Brinken said during a visit to Kuwait on Thursday.
“We look forward to seeing what Iran is going to do or not doing, and to be fully prepared to return to Vienna to continue negotiations.
“The ball is still on the Iranian court.”
The administration of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has repeatedly called on Washington to take sanctions lifting measures before resuming compliance with the agreement.
However, the possibility of reaching an agreement after Rouhani seems to be increasing hand over Address to President-elect Ebrahim Raisi early next month.
Raisi is an ultraconservative, but has expressed support for nuclear negotiations and believes that Iran needs to end US sanctions.
‘Guarantee National Interest’
Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said on Wednesday that experience shows that “believe that the West does not work”, referring to the United States’ withdrawal from the agreement and its consequences.
Raisi has stated that his government will support negotiations that “guarantee national interests” but will not allow negotiations for the sake of negotiations.
One of Trump’s main criticisms of the 2015 agreement is that it failed to resolve Iran’s ballistic missile program or its alleged interference in regional affairs.
But Tehran has always refused to include non-nuclear issues into the agreement.
Khamenei also criticized the United States for refusing to “guarantee (it) that it will not violate the agreement in the future” through unilateral withdrawal like Trump did.
Iran’s chief negotiator, Abbas Aragec, said this month that negotiations must “wait for our new government” because Tehran “is in a transitional period”.
The sixth round of talks ended on June 20, and the date for the next round of talks has not yet been determined.
Rouhani has been in office since 2013 and is preparing to leave after up to two consecutive terms ends. He has repeatedly promised to lift the sanctions before the end of his term.
But earlier this month, he expressed the hope that his successor would reach an agreement to lift the sanctions, and insisted that from his government’s perspective, “the work is ready” to be completed.