Iran’s top nuclear negotiator on Tuesday confirmed an agreement had been struck with the EU official representing world powers negotiating with Tehran on the content of upcoming talks in Moscow.
Saeed Jalili, the secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, and EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton had a telephone conversation late on Monday, Jalili’s office said in a statement reported by Iranian state media.
According to the statement, the talks in Moscow on June 18 and 19 will focus on points made by Iran and by the P5+1 group (the United States, Britain, France, Russia, China plus Germany) in a previous round in Baghdad late May.
Jalili told Ashton he “will explicitly talk about Iran’s five-point proposals” in Moscow and that “an appropriate response by the P5+1 to the (Iranian) proposals can help advance the talks.”
On Monday, Ashton said she had reached an agreement with Jalili on the content of the Moscow meeting after the hour-long phone conversation.
The two “agreed on the need for Iran to engage on the E3+3 (P5+1) proposals, which address its concerns on the exclusively peaceful nature of the Iranian nuclear programme,” Ashton’s office said in a statement.
She also conveyed the group was ready to respond to the “issues” raised by the Iranians in the Baghdad meeting, the statement said, without elaborating.
The announcement was preceded by a meeting in Strasbourg of the political directors of the P5+1.
The Western nations in the P5+1, and the UN’s International Atomic Energy Agency, suspect Iran has conducted research towards developing nuclear weapons.
Iran denies that accusation and claims it is being unfairly treated by the West under the terms of the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. It says its activities are solely for peaceful purposes.
The Moscow round follows two earlier unproductive meetings since early April, in Istanbul and in Baghdad which failed to yield results in efforts to curb Tehran’s nuclear activities.