Just four days before the deadline on the Iran nuclear deal, Iran’s Foreign Minister Zarif puts the ball in six world powers’ court; Israel’s Intelligence Minister Steinitz: Deal is full of loopholes.
LAUSANNE – As talks between Tehran and six world powers neared the home stretch on Saturday, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif moved the ball into the powers’ court, saying that Tehran had shown flexibility during negotiations over its nuclear program, and that now it is the other side’s turn.
The two sides are trying to reach a framework agreement that will set general principles for solving the disagreement over Tehran’s nuclear program by Tuesday.
U.S. State Secretary John Kerry met with Zarif twice on Saturday, bringing to the total number of their meeting over the last three days to seven.
With only four days left before the Iran nuclear deal deadline, the foreign ministers of France and Germany arrived in the afternoon at the Beau-Rivage Palace Hotel on the shores of Lake Geneva where the talks are taking place, to join the intensive negotiations.
A senior State Department official who is taking part in the talks said it was important that the world powers’ foreign ministers arrived in Lausanne for the negotiations. “We expect the pace to intensify as we assess if an understanding is possible,” he said.
EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini arrived in Lausanne on Saturday evening, and said that the sides have never been closer to an agreement. She stressed, however, that there are still differences to overcome.
On Sunday, the foreign ministers of Russia, Britain and China will join the talks.
Zarif met with the German and French foreign ministers on Saturday. He said he had a very good meeting with them, and that both understand that sanctions, pressure and an agreement do not go together. During the meeting, Zarif tried to convince them to compromise their position on lifting sanctions on Iran.
In an attempt to move the ball to the P5+1, court Zarif tweeted: “In negotiations, both sides must show flexibility. We have, and are ready to make a good deal for all. We await our counterparts’ readiness.”
In negotiations, both sides must show flexibility.We have, and are ready to make a good deal for all.We await our counterparts’ readiness.