VIENNA, October 14 (RIA Novosti), Daria Chernyshova — Negotiators from Iran, the European Union and the United States are about to start talks on Tehran's nuclear program in Vienna, as the November 24 deadline for signing a comprehensive deal is approaching.
The talks in Vienna follow late September round of talks in New York, and are expected to bridge the differences complicating the final comprehensive agreement on Iran's comprehensive nuclear program.
On Tuesday, Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif is due to meet with the EU foreign policy chief, Catherine Ashton, according to Austrian Foreign Ministry. On Wednesday, US Secretary of State John Kerry will join the negotiations.
The sides are expected to set the date for the next round of talks between Tehran and the so-called P5+1 group, which includes Russia, France, the United Kingdom, the United States, China and Germany.
The main focus of this week's meeting will be the main areas of contention - Iran's enrichment of uranium and the easing of US, European and UN nuclear-related sanctions against Iran.
By November 24, Iran and the worlds six major powers are scheduled to work out a "mutually-agreed long-term comprehensive solution that would ensure Iran's nuclear programme will be exclusively peaceful," the Joint Plan of Action (JPA) says. JPA or an interim nuclear deal was adopted last November in Geneva, and started the process paving the way for a long-term deal.
Under the JPA, Iran agreed to curb its nuclear program activities in exchange for some sanctions relief. The initial deadline tie finding a permanent agreement was set fir July 2014, but then moved till November 24. According to Iranian officials, it may still be postponed again, if the sides fail to settle the differences in time.
The latest round of negotiations took place on September 24, when the group of international mediators met with the Iranian delegation in New York to discuss the Islamic Republic nuclear program, although they failed to reach an agreement with Tehran on any of the key issues.