| 21 May 2024, Tuesday |

Germany urges Iran to return to nuclear talks with realistic proposals

A Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said on Monday that Germany expects Iran to provide serious ideas in discussions over its nuclear program, noting that the suggestions Tehran presented last week virtually all violated previously negotiated agreements.

Its suggestions are “not a foundation for a good conclusion to discussions,” she added. “We carefully and thoroughly evaluated the offers… and determined that Iran violated practically all agreements reached before in months of arduous discussions.”

Iran and major nations began discussions in April to bring Tehran and Washington back into full compliance with the 2015 agreement, which was abandoned three years ago by former US President Donald Trump.

However, talks ceased following the election of Iran’s hardline President Ebrahim Raisi in June.

Indirect discussions between Washington and Tehran on resuming their nuclear accord begun a week ago but broke up on Friday, with a restart slated for later this week, as Western diplomats expressed dismay over sweeping Iranian demands.

The German Foreign Ministry spokesperson said it was unacceptable that Iran was expanding its nuclear capability in conjunction with the discussions. She stated that Berlin wishes to build on previous achievements and is “dedicated to the diplomatic road, but the window of opportunity is closing more and more.”

A senior Iranian official said on Sunday a U.S. reluctance to lift all sanctions that were re-imposed on Iran by Trump is the main challenge to reviving the deal.

Western powers have questioned Tehran’s determination to salvage the agreement. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Friday Washington would not let Iran drag out the process while continuing to advance its uranium enrichment programme and it will pursue other options if diplomacy fails.

  • Reuters