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Iran nuclear deal

US repeats it's willing to meet Iran directly on nuclear and other issues

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The US State Department on Monday repeated that it remains open to meeting with Iranian officials directly to discuss the nuclear deal and further issues after Iran's foreign minister said Tehran would consider this, but had made no decisions.

“We are prepared to meet directly. We have consistently held the position that it would be much more productive to engage with Iran directly on both JCPOA negotiations and on other issues,” State Department spokesman Ned Price told reporters.

Iran has so far refused to deal directly with the US in Vienna in talks regarding both sides resuming compliance with the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, formally called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

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Price also said the US had not made Iran's releasing of four Americans a condition of reaching an agreement on reviving the nuclear deal, insisting that achieving such an agreement was “at best, an uncertain proposition.”

Iranian Americans, whose US citizenship is not recognized by Tehran, are often pawns between the two nations, now at odds over whether to revive the fraying 2015 pact under which Iran limited its nuclear program in return for sanctions relief.

“We want to see these Americans... returned as soon as possible,” Price said. “It would not serve our purposes - it would not serve their purposes - to tie their fates to a proposition that... is uncertain at best.”

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