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EU Optimistic On Resumption Of Talks With Iran

Source: RFE/RL

European Union foreign ministers say a "swift implementation of voluntary measures by all sides" is key in nuclear talks between Iran and six world powers.

EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton
(photo by Mona Hoobehfekr, ISNA)

The ministers, meeting in Brussels, said in a statement on December 16 that Iran has to implement "its commitments in good faith."

The statement said the European Union remains committed to the suspension of EU sanctions immediately after the UN nuclear agency verifies the implementation of the nuclear-related measures by Tehran.

Earlier, EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton reiterated optimism that the nuclear talks would be resumed soon.

She said most of the details for resuming negotiations had been "sorted out."

The talks were halted last week for "consultations" after Washington added more names to a blacklist aimed at preventing Iran from obtaining the means to construct nuclear weapons.

Iranian Official: EU's Ashton Reassures Tehran On Nuke Deal

Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi says EU foreign-policy chief Catherine Ashton has reassured Iran that world powers are committed to an agreement reducing Tehran's nuclear activities in exchange for easing sanctions against Iran.

Araghchi made his comments in Brussels after talks with Ashton.

He said technical talks between the world powers and Iranian officials will continue "very soon." Iran and the United States, Britain, China, France, Russia, and Germany signed the interim agreement in Geneva last month.

Iranian officials were angered last week by a U.S. move to expand the number of companies on a blacklist of entities evading sanctions against Iran, and stopped talks in Vienna on how to implement the agreement.

An Ashton spokesman said the meeting on December 17 was held to "take stock of progress."

Based on reporting by dpa, Mehr, and ISNA

Copyright (c) 2013 RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

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