Iran nuclear talks: US finds `substance`, Russia, Israel say `nothing to applaud`
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Last Updated: Thursday, October 17, 2013, 21:15
Zee Media Bureau/Supriya Jha

Tehran: After an “unprecedented” session of nuclear talks between Iran and six world powers in Geneva on Tuesday, the two sides would be meeting again on November 7 and 8 for the follow up talks, the European Union’s Catherine Aston said Thursday.

The Iranian proposal to allow spot checks on its nuclear sites, according its lead nuke negotiator Abbas Araqchi, had a "capacity to make a breakthrough" involves "proportionate and reciprocal steps by both sides", reports said.

After Iran and the Sextet, i.e, p5 + 1 (Britain, France Russia, China and the United States + Germany) held nuclear talks on Tuesday, it got many positive reactions from the world powers except Russia and Israel, who continue to look at Tehran’s intentions with suspicion.

After the talks where Iran reportedly presented a three-step plan to resolve the controversy around its nuclear programme within a year, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said, "We hope that this a beginning of a new phase in our relations”.

Saying that the talks showed an unprecedented “level of seriousness and substance”, the United States praised Iran’s hour-long presentation that was in English for the first time ever.

Whereas the joint statement issued by Iran and the EU also hailed the talks as "substantive and forward-looking".

However, Russia said there was “nothing to applaud” in Geneva talks though it was better than Almaty talks.

"Nothing to applaud. Nevertheless, the Geneva round has been more constructive than the previous one held in Almaty," Sergey Ryabkov, deputy foreign minister and key negotiator on Iran, was cited by Russian news agency Interfax as saying.

"The talks were difficult, sometimes strained, sometimes unpredictable. One of the reasons is a very low level of mutual trust, the virtual absence of the necessary trust,” Sergey Ryabkov added.

Israel on the other hand, cautioned that the US must not remove the sanctions as yet and Iran must be judged by its actions and not merely by its presentations, reports said.

Israel PM Benjamin Netanyahu in his UN General Assembly address on October 1 had called Iranian president Rouhani as a “wolf in sheep’s clothing”.

He had reiterated his suspicion against Iran after Obama held a 15 minutes historic phone call with Rouhani.

Israel had earlier warned the US against Rouhani’s “sweet talk and blitz of smiles” and repeated his suggestion of not loosening the noose around Tehran’s neck.

First Published: Thursday, October 17, 2013, 15:08

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