Rob Malley, the US State Department’s point man for negotiations with Iran, stated on Wednesday that he was traveling to Vienna to restart those talks, which have been stalled for months over crucial last-minute issues.
“Our expectations are in check, but the United States welcomes EU efforts and is prepared for a good faith attempt to reach a deal,” Malley tweeted.
“It will shortly be clear if Iran is prepared for the same,” he said.
In March, indirect negotiations between Washington and Tehran that were mediated by the European Union came to a standstill on the specifics of restarting the 2015 nuclear deal.
There was a draft agreement on the table that would offer Tehran respite from sanctions in exchange for limiting its nuclear program, which has continued apace and stoked concerns that the nation may be on the verge of developing nuclear weapons.
But Western officials claim that Tehran’s demand that the US remove its potent Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) from the State Department’s formal lists of “foreign terrorist organizations” has hindered progress toward a final agreement (FTO).
Malley warned Congress in May that failure in the negotiations was quite likely after President Joe Biden attempted to resurrect the 2015 agreement, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JPCOA), which former President Donald Trump withdrew from on his own. He made reference to troublesome demands from Iran “that go beyond the JCPOA.” Washington has taken action to strengthen ties with Israel and Gulf allies that are vehemently opposed to Iran getting nuclear weapons as a deal is in doubt.
The United States would not accept an Iran with nuclear weapons, according to Biden.
White House spokesman John Kirby stated on Tuesday that the Biden administration was not willing to remove the IRGC’s categorization as a terrorist organization in order to reach a final agreement. “The president has been incredibly transparent. The Iranian government actively supports terrorism “He informed the press. The president refused when asked if he would be willing to lift the FTO designation of the IRGC as a result of talks with Iran on a nuclear deal, Kirby added. But when questioned about whether the IRGC currently engages in or supports terrorism, Kirby declined to respond.