Iran And Nuclear Talks
April 13, 2012 by staff
Iran And Nuclear Talks, Giving Iran another chance at diplomacy, deeply skeptical Obama administration officials return to nuclear negotiations this weekend looking for quick progress – or at least enough hope to hold off urgent calls from Israel for military action.
The US and other world powers are stopping short of saying the gathering in Istanbul is a make-or-break situation. But as they sit down with Iranian officials for the first time in more than a year to press yet again for an agreement on Tehran’s disputed nuclear program, American officials say the window for a diplomatic breakthrough is closing. And in the event the talks fail completely, all US options remain on the table.
Speaking on Thursday after hosting foreign ministers from the Group of Eight leading industrialized nations, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton urged Iran to prove to the world its claim that its uranium enrichment activity is for peaceful purposes. The US and many other countries fear Tehran is trying to produce an atomic bomb and have challenged Iran’s Ayatollah Ali Khamenei to substantiate his edict that weapons of mass destruction violate Islamic law.
“We’re looking for concrete results,” Clinton told reporters. “They assert that their program is purely peaceful. They point to a fatwa that the supreme leader has issued against the pursuit of nuclear weapons. We want them to demonstrate clearly in the actions they propose that they have truly abandoned any nuclear weapons ambition.”
The ball is clearly in Iran’s court. Mounting US and European measures are crippling the Iranian economy, with the rial depreciating dramatically under the weight of restrictions on petroleum exports and efforts to cut off Iranian banks from the world financial system. US and European sanctions will get more severe this summer.
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