VIENNA ( Associated Press) – Top negotiators to revive the nuclear deal with Iran sounded optimistic on Sunday about Tehran’s chances of reaching an agreement to put limits on uranium enrichment.
“We are 5 minutes or 5 seconds away from the finish line,” Russian ambassador Mikhail Ulyanov told reporters outside the Palais Coburg in Vienna after four days of talks. He added that “3 or 4 issues” are yet to be resolved.
“They are particularly vulnerable to Iranians and Americans,” Ulyanov said. “I can’t guarantee that, but the assumption is we’re headed in the right direction.”
EU chief negotiator Enrique Mora also said he was “absolutely” optimistic about the progress of the talks so far.
“We are making progress and I hope we will close the talks soon,” he told Iranian media.
Negotiators from Iran, the United States and the European Union resumed indirect talks on Tehran’s ailing nuclear deal on Thursday after a month-long stalemate in talks.
Since the de facto collapse of the deal, Iran has commissioned advanced centrifuges and rapidly increased its stockpile of enriched uranium.
Iran signed a nuclear deal in 2015 with the US, France, Germany, Britain, Russia and China. In the agreement, Iran agreed to limit its uranium enrichment under the supervision of UN inspectors in exchange for the lifting of economic sanctions.
The then US President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew the US from the deal in 2018, saying he would negotiate a stronger deal, but it did not happen. Iran began violating the terms of the agreement a year later.