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Iran nuclear deal

Parties to Iran nuclear deal to hold formal meeting on Sunday, says EU

Published: Updated:

Parties negotiating a revival of the Iran nuclear deal will hold a formal meeting in Vienna on Sunday, the European Union said on Saturday.

The meeting comes amid the sixth round of indirect talks between Washington and Tehran and these formal meetings are usually an indication that the latest round will be adjourned.

The United States withdrew in 2018 from the pact, under which Iran accepted curbs on its nuclear program in exchange for a lifting of many foreign sanctions against it.

Sunday’s formal meeting comes more than a week after this round of talks resumed and is an indication that the talks are likely to be adjourned.

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On Saturday, Iran’s ultraconservative cleric Ebrahim Raisi won 62 percent of the presidential election votes counted so far, after Raisi’s rivals conceded defeat.

Raisi won more than 17.8 million votes out of 28.6 million ballots counted, far ahead of the second-placed candidate Mohsen Rezai, who won 3.3 million votes, election office chairman Jamal Orf said on state television after Friday’s vote.

Officials over the week have indicated that differences remain on key issues.

“The Joint Commission of #JCPOA will meet on Sunday, June 20,” Mikhail Ulyanov Russia’s envoy to the talks said on Twitter.

“It will decide on the way ahead at the #ViennaTalks. An agreement on restoration of the nuclear deal is within reach but is not finalized yet.”

The remaining parties to the deal - Iran, Russia, China, France, Britain, Germany and the European Union - meet in the basement of a luxury hotel.

The US delegation to the talks is based in a hotel across the street as Iran refuses face-to-face meetings, leaving the other delegations and EU to work as go-betweens.

Since former US President Donald Trump pulled out of the deal and reimposed sanctions on Iran, Tehran has embarked on counter measures, including rebuilding stockpiles of enriched uranium, a potential pathway to nuclear bombs.

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