Diplomats: Iran nuke deal expected Sunday

Head of the Iranian Atomic Energy Organization Ali Akbar Salehi , left, and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohamad Javad Zarif, wave to journalist from a balcony of the Palais Coburg. (AP)

Diplomats told the Associated Press that negotiators at the Iran nuclear talks are expected to reach a provisional agreement Sunday on a historic deal that would curb the country’s atomic program in return for sanctions relief.

Two diplomats at the talks said the envisioned accord will be sent to capitals for review and, barring last-minute objections, be announced on Monday.

The diplomats spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the negotiations publicly.

The agreement would cap nearly a decade of diplomacy, including the current round in Vienna that has run more than two weeks and blown through three deadlines.

France’s foreign minister said on Sunday he hoped major powers and Iran have at last entered the final stages of their nuclear negotiations, although work
still remained.

“I hope, I hope, that we are finally entering the final phase of this marathon negotiation,” Laurent Fabius told reporters after returning from an emergency cabinet meeting in Paris on the Greek crisis.

Fabius said he would take part in meetings throughout the afternoon, including one with the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, the U.N. nuclear watchdog.

Meanwhile, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is flying out to Vienna to take part in talks on Iran’s nuclear program, the foreign ministry said Sunday on Twitter.

“Sergei Lavrov is flying out to Vienna to take part in the talks of the ‘six’ international mediators and Iran on the Iranian nuclear program,” the ministry said in a tweet.

Russia’s TASS state news agency cited unnamed sources in Vienna as saying that a meeting of the ministers from the six world powers and Tehran could take place Sunday that would finally reach a comprehensive solution.

Lavrov spoke to United States Secretary of State John Kerry on Saturday evening to discuss the talks.

Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:45 - GMT 06:45