Iran and the 5+1 Powers will resume high-level nuclear talks next week in Geneva, according to Tehran’s lead negotiator, Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi.
Araqchi said on Thursday that Iran and the 5+1 (US, Britain, France, Germany, Russia, and China) will begin bilateral talks on Monday, with the first plenary session on Wednesday.
He said that the bilateral discussions would include Iran-US meetings.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said earlier this week that talks would soon resume, but added that they would not be attended by Foreign Ministers.
Last month, the Foreign Ministers joined talks in Vienna, but failed to reach a comprehensive nuclear deal. Instead, they extended interim arrangements and negotiations to July 1.
Even as Araqchi was declaring the resumption of talks, a sign of trouble was coming from President Rouhani.
Up to the end of the Vienna talks, Rouhani was upbeat, speaking of a “win-win” settlement by the November 24 deadline.
In sharp contrast on Thursday, Rouhani said that negotiations will remain difficult because Iran’s enemies cannot be trusted. He claimed that the 5+1 Powers came to the negotiating table “not in good faith but to manipulate the situation to reach their own goals”.
Supreme Leader’s Brother Launches Latest Attack on Former President: “An Agent of the US”
Seyyed Mohammad Khamenei, the older brother of Ayatollah Khamenei, has launched the latest attack on former President Hashemi Rafsanjani.
In a magazine interview, Khamenei claimed that Rafsanjani, whom hardliners fear will try to reclaim the chairmanship of the Assembly of Experts, has been an American agent: “The USA was trying to designate Hashemi Rafsanjani as the Supreme Leader after Ayatollah Khomeini’s demise [in 1989].”
Khamenei went even further with the assertion that the US, amid the Iran-Contra plot, tried to reach agreement with Rafsanjani to assassinate Khomeini.
Rouhani, Worried About Economy and Sanctions, Appeals for “Support and Cooperation” from Iranians
President Rouhani’s growing pessimism over the Iranian economy came out again on Thursday as he spoke with disabled war veterans and families of those killed in conflict:
“The enemy has always taken action against the nation of Iran in different ways, and today, a conspiracy named sanctions has entered the stage against the people. We must pass through this issue, and this is not possible without the support and cooperation of the people.