Senior negotiators restarting talks to revive the 2015 Iran nuclear deal said on Sunday they were optimistic about the possibility of a deal to limit Tehran’s uranium enrichment.
“We are five minutes or five seconds from the finish line,” Russian Ambassador Mikhail Ulyanov told reporters outside Vienna’s Coburg Palace, four days of negotiations. He said there were still “3 or 4 issues” to be resolved.
“They are sensitive, especially to Iranians and Americans,” Ulyanov said. “I can’t guarantee it, but the impression is that we’re heading in the right direction.”
The EU’s chief negotiator, Enrique Mora, also said he was “absolutely” optimistic about the progress of the talks so far.
“We are moving forward and I expect we will end the negotiations soon,” he told Iranian media.
Negotiators from Iran, the United States and the European Union resumed indirect talks on Tehran’s tattered nuclear deal on Thursday after months of stalled talks.
Since the de facto collapse of the deal, Iran has been operating advanced centrifuges and rapidly increasing its stockpile of enriched uranium.
Iran reached a nuclear deal in 2015 with the United States, France, Germany, Britain, Russia and China. The deal saw Iran agree to limit its uranium enrichment activities under the supervision of UN inspectors in exchange for lifting economic sanctions.
Then US President Donald Trump unilaterally pulled the US out of the deal in 2018, saying he would negotiate a stronger deal, but that didn’t happen. A year later, Iran began violating the terms of the agreement.