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Nuclear deal still possible, says Iran

TEHRAN (AFP) – Iran insisted that a revived nuclear agreement with major powers remains achievable even as European powers backed Washington in urging Tehran to budge following talks in Qatar.

The United States (US) said it was “disappointed” and that there was “no progress made” after two days of indirect talks with Iran brokered by an European Union (EU) envoy in the Qatari capital Doha.

But Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian said he believed the talks had been “positive” and a deal could still be reached.

“We are determined to continue negotiating until a realistic agreement is reached,” he said after a phone call with his Qatari counterpart Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani, who hosted the indirect talks.

“Our assessment of the recent round of talks in Doha is positive,” he said. “I insist on the fact that we are making serious efforts to reach a good, solid and lasting agreement,” said Amir-Abdollahian.

“An accord is achievable if the United States is realistic.”

The two days of talks, in which the EU mediators shuttled between Iranian and US delegations, were intended to reboot wider negotiations between Iran and major powers in Vienna which have been stalled since March.

Iran’s top nuclear negotiator Ali Bagheri Kani listens to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov during a meeting in Tehran, Iran. PHOTO: AP