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Iran nuclear deal

Iran could hold direct talks with US to reach ‘good’ nuclear deal: FM

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Iran could hold direct talks with the US over its 2015 nuclear deal if it deems it necessary to reach a “good” agreement, Tehran’s top diplomat said on Monday.

“The US is sending messages calling for direct talks with us… If we reach a stage in the negotiations where it becomes necessary to have a [direct] dialogue with the US to reach a good agreement, we will not ignore it,” Iranian state media quoted Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian as saying.

Talks between Iran and the remaining signatories to the 2015 deal – Russia, China, France, Germany and Britain – are currently taking place in Vienna.

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The US is participating indirectly in the talks due to Iran’s refusal to negotiate directly with Washington. The talks aim to bring Iran back into compliance with the nuclear pact and facilitate a US return to the agreement.

US Special Envoy for Iran Robert Malley, who heads up the US negotiating team in Vienna, told Reuters on Sunday that Washington would “welcome” direct talks with Tehran but added that his side has “heard nothing to that effect.”

Under the 2015 deal, Iran limited its nuclear program in return for sanctions relief.

Washington withdrew from the deal in 2018 under then-President Donald Trump, who also reimposed sweeping sanctions on Tehran.

Iran has since started enriching uranium up to 60 percent purity – a big step closer to the 90 percent required for weapons-grade material.

Read more:

Iran says it rules out US prisoner release as nuclear talks precondition

Iran nuclear agreement unlikely without release of US prisoners: Malley

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