Negotiators make their way home as Iran talks enter critical phase


“This is one of the most tedious, lengthy and difficult parts of the negotiations, but absolutely essential.”

Chief negotiators from Iran and Europe returned home for consultations as talks to revive the 2015 nuclear deal reached a critical stage, state media in the Islamic Republic said on Saturday.

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“Negotiators will return to Vienna in two days,” but expert-level discussions in the eighth round of talks would continue on Saturday and Sunday. IRNA said the news agency.

Talks between Tehran and world powers resumed in late November after being suspended for about five months when Iran elected a new, ultra-conservative government.

Iran agreed to the nuclear deal officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) with Britain, China, France, Germany, Russia and the United States.

It offered the Islamic Republic sanctions relief in exchange for restrictions on its nuclear program.

But former US President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew from the deal in 2018 and imposed crippling sanctions, prompting Iran to backtrack on its commitments.

“We are now in a phase of negotiations where we are discussing difficult issues and how we can put into words and translate into a document the issues that we have agreed in principle on.” IRNA quotes an anonymous source as saying.

“We are discussing the details,” the source said, adding that “this is one of the most arduous, lengthy and difficult parts of the negotiations, but absolutely essential to achieving our goal.”

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