Iran Nuclear NewsFrench Foreign Minister Finds Iranian Commitments Lacking

French Foreign Minister Finds Iranian Commitments Lacking

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Commitments offered by Iran in nuclear talks with 5+1 powers, do not go far enough and more work needs to be done, was the opinion of the French Foreign Minister last Friday.

He said that, “We are in favour of a solid agreement … for now there remain difficulties.” The Foreign Minister was in Riga where he was taking part in a European Union foreign ministers’ meeting. Talking to reporters he said, “There has been progress but as far as the volume, checks and duration of the envisaged commitments are concerned, the situation is still insufficient, so there is more work to be done.”

 

Commitments offered by Iran in nuclear talks with 5+1 powers, do not go far enough and more work needs to be done, was the opinion of the French Foreign Minister last Friday.

He said that, “We are in favour of a solid agreement … for now there remain difficulties.” The Foreign Minister was in Riga where he was taking part in a European Union foreign ministers’ meeting. Talking to reporters he said, “There has been progress but as far as the volume, checks and duration of the envisaged commitments are concerned, the situation is still insufficient, so there is more work to be done.”

 

However, the United States and France have downplayed any disagreements over nuclear talks with Iran, trying to keep a brave face. Both sides have said that they agree that the accord now under discussion needed to be strengthened and that they were “on the same page” in the words of US Secretary of State John Kerry.

Kerry met with the French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius in Paris and said, “If we didn’t think that there was further to go… we’d have had an agreement already.”

The US Secretary of State has been more diplomatic than the French Foreign minister and has said that some gaps needs to be closed and that is why there has not been an agreement yet. These words may put a positive spin on the prolonged negotiations, but whatever is happening in the talks does not seem to be enough for the 5+1 powers.

The US secretary of state said it was up to Iran to prove its peaceful intentions to the world if it wants a deal on its nuclear programme ahead of the looming March 31 deadline. Key issues in the talks, which began in late 2013, include the level of uranium enrichment that Iran should be allowed, the degree of international supervision of its programme and how long an agreement should last.

Most of the opposition to Iran and the pressure on it has been coming from France. Fabius emphasised that any deal to remove sanctions could not be made only between Iran and the US and has made an effort to make its position known.

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