TribLIVE

| USWorld


 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Iran deal elusive as talks continue

Email Newsletters

Click here to sign up for one of our email newsletters.

Daily Photo Galleries

By The Associated Press
Friday, Nov. 8, 2013, 6:21 p.m.
 

GENEVA — With a boost from Russia and China, Secretary of State John Kerry mounted a major diplomatic push on Friday to reach an interim nuclear deal with Iran, despite fierce opposition from Israel and uncertainty in Congress.

Kerry and his counterparts from Britain, France and Germany participated in talks after a full day of negotiations on Thursday. They said obstacles remain in the way of an agreement offering sanctions reductions for nuclear concessions.

Word that Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and a Chinese deputy foreign minister were headed to the talks provided fresh hope for at least an interim deal, perhaps on Saturday.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu insisted any agreement in the making is a “bad deal” that would give Iran a pass by offering to lift sanctions for cosmetic concessions that, Netanyahu said, would leave intact Tehran's nuclear weapons-making ability.

Kerry tempered reports of progress, warning of “important gaps” that must be overcome.

Asked about Netanyahu's criticism, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said “any critique of the deal is premature” because an agreement has not been reached.

“The United States and Israel are in complete agreement about the need to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon,” he said.

Lavrov would join the talks, Russia's RIA Novosti news agency reported. His deputy, Sergei Ryabov, was quoted as saying Moscow expects negotiations to produce a “lasting result expected by the international community.”

A Western diplomat in Geneva told The Associated Press that China is sending a deputy foreign minister to the talks. The diplomat spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to provide such information.

“We are reaching a very critical, important point,” Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi said in comments broadcast on Iranian PressTV. “The negotiations have reached its critical, very sensitive situation, and it needs decisions at higher levels.”

Any agreement would be a breakthrough in light of nearly a decade of mostly inconclusive talks.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.

 

 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read World

  1. Motivated Syrian Kurds take fight to ISIS in contrast to failures of Iraqi army
  2. Dollar’s prominence grows in Venezuela
  3. British PM pitches looser pact with EU
  4. Putin: Revealing military deaths now against law
  5. North Korea upgrading space launch site
  6. FIFA rocked as U.S. indicts 14 in corruption investigation
  7. Eiffel Tower temporarily shut down as employees walk out
  8. Officials claim world duty to Mideast at international forum
  9. Islamic State terrorists break into Palmyra museum, Syria says
  10. Burundi opposition figure Feruzi shot dead in capital
  11. Questions rife in deadly cartel, police shootout at Mexico ranch