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03/28/15

French, German FMs Join Nuclear Iran Talks In Lausanne

Source: RFE/RL

The French and German foreign ministers, Laurent Fabius and Frank-Walter Steinmeier, have joined U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Iran's Foreign Minister Javad Zarif in Lausanne, Switzerland, for talks on Tehran's nuclear program.


French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius with his Iranian counterpart Javad Zarif

(photo by Bahman Zarehei, Islamic Republic News Agency)

The talks are being held ahead of a self-imposed March 31 deadline for a political framework agreement. They aim at curbing Iran's nuclear activities in exchange for sanctions relief.

Fabius told reporters as he arrived that the talks have been "long and difficult, saying, "We've advanced on certain issues, not yet enough on others."

Steinmeier said the negotiations were in the "endgame."


German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier with his Iranian counterpart Javad Zarif

(photo by Bahman Zarehei, Islamic Republic News Agency)

Diplomats at the talks said their presence does not necessarily mean a deal is almost done.

The foreign ministers of Russia and Britain along with a senior Chinese official were also expected in Lausanne over the weekend.

Iran denies accusations that it is trying to secretly develop a nuclear weapons capability, claiming it only wants to develop civilian nuclear power for domestic needs.

Based on reporting by AP, Reuters, AFP


Copyright (c) 2015 RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036. www.rferl.org

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