Iranian officials have praised the outcome of this week’s talks with the 5+1 Powers on a comprehensive nuclear talks, while stressing that the agreement of a framework for discussions testifies to Tehran’s strength.
On Thursday, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and the European Union’s Catherine Ashton said formal discussions will resume in Vienna on March 17, with experts from the two sides discussing technical matters a couple of weeks in advance.
The spokesman for Iran’s Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, Behrouz Kamalvandi, said on Friday, “It seems that both parties are satisfied…though negotiations are very hard and they need many more expert level talks, so that we can get into the issues in more details and define a framework for the negotiations.”
Kamalvandi maintained that Iran had achieved the advance while being aware of the tactics and “intense media spin” of the 5+1 Powers, countering this with its presentation of key legal, technical, and political issues.
The spokesman also reaffirmed Iran’s cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency with an intention to “engage more directly”.
Agreements between Tehran and the IAEA in the last three months have included inspections of uranium mines and facilities such as the Arak heavy-water reactor complex. Tehran has also agreed to provide information on explosive detonators which have the potential for use in a militarized nuclear program.
Iran & Pakistan Form Joint Committee Over Abducted Border Guards
Iran and Pakistan have formed a joint committee over the case of five Iranian border guards abducted by Sunni insurgents.
The guards were seized in southeastern Iran near the Pakistani border by the faction Jaish ul-Adl on 3 February.
Iranian officials say the guards have been taken into Pakistan and have pressed Islamabad for effective action.
US Companies Seeking Permission to Sell Aircraft Parts to Iran
US companies are seeking permission to sell aircraft parts to Iran for the first time in more than 30 years.
Boeing and General Electric have applied for export licenses follow November’s interim nuclear deal between Iran and the 5+1 Powers, according to industry officials.
US aerospace companies halted sales to the Islamic Republic when sanctions were imposed after the Iranian takeover of the US Embassy in 1979.
A GE spokesman said his company had been asking since 2004 for permission to provide parts and maintenance for engines for safety reasons. GE refiled its request after the interim nuclear deal came into effect on January 20.