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Iran says it senses ‘retreat’ by West in nuclear talks

Iranian foreign ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh during a press conference in Tehran, on February 22, 2021. (Atta Kenare/AFP)
Iranian foreign ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh during a press conference in Tehran, on February 22, 2021. (Atta Kenare/AFP)

Iran says it has detected a new “realism” on the part of Western countries, ahead of further negotiations in Vienna aimed at rescuing an accord on its nuclear program.

“We sense a retreat, or rather realism from the Western parties in the Vienna negotiations, that there can be no demands beyond the nuclear accord,” struck by Tehran and world powers in 2015, foreign ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh tells reporters.

However, “it is too early to judge if the United States and the three European countries have drawn up a real agenda to commit to lifting sanctions,” he says.

Negotiations to restore the accord began last year but stopped in June as Iran elected ultraconservative President Ebrahim Raisi.

They resumed in late November and the latest round is due to restart on Monday after a three-day break for the end of year holidays.

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