Zee Media Bureau/Himanshu Kapoor
Geneva: Six world powers, US, China, Russia, France, the UK and Germany, have gathered in Geneva in a bid to reach an agreement with Iran over its disputed nuclear programme and there are expectations that there could be a breakthrough deal when the talks resume.
As the talks get underway, Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has vowed no retreat from Tehran`s nuclear "rights", saying that the world powers must respect the Islamic republic`s "red lines". France, whose intervention at the last rounds of Geneva talks two weeks ago put brakes on a deal, today said Khamenei comments could complicate negotiations.
Khamenei today reiterated his strong support for the negotiating team though said that this doesn’t mean any compromise with western powers over the nuclear programme.
Israel, which Iran has accused of trying to “torpedo” a deal with the world powers, is fiercely lobbying against the deal that will not curb Iran’s nuclear programme. Israel fears that an agreement during the talks would broaden Islamic republic’s influence in the region
Also, Iran President Hassan Rouhani in a telephone call with British Prime Minister David Cameron stressed Tehran`s firm right to pursue a peaceful nuclear programme. Rouhani told Cameron that Iran’s nuclear programme will remain peaceful and it will strongly defend its nuclear rights.
However, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif was upbeat about reaching an interim agreement in Geneva and tweeted, “I think there is every possibility for success.”
Powers are trying to clinch a deal with Iran that would put a brake on its nuclear program in return for limited relief of economic sanctions. Today, US President Barack Obama held a meeting with the senators asked them to not propose new sanctions on Iran for now.
US, China, Russia, France, the UK and Germany, also known as P5+1, are permanent members of the UN Security Council. The new round of negotiations, tentatively scheduled to run until Friday.