WASHINGTON, December 6 (Sputnik) — Iran nuclear talks should come to a positive conclusion, and it is not the right time to introduce new sanctions against Tehran as there is still a chance for a breakthrough in consultations, US Vice President Joe Biden said Saturday.
“There may well be a time when the increased pressure is needed and welcomed. I have met with more than 168 members of the Senate and I have made it clear that there may well be a time when we are not only welcoming, but we are asking for additional sanctions… But now it is not the right time to do that… And with all that is happening in the region, this is not the time to risk a breakdown, when we still have a chance for a breakthrough,” Biden said at the Saban forum.
Tehran has been a target of sanctions imposed by the UN Security Council, as well as the European Union, the United States, and several other countries over the allegations that Iran is trying to produce nuclear weapons under the guise of a civilian program. These claims have been repeatedly denied by Tehran officials, who assured that the country's nuclear development has a peaceful nature and is aimed purely at satisfying the country's energy needs.
Last year, Iran and the P5+1 group of international mediators comprising Russia, the United States, the United Kingdom, France, China and Germany agreed to strike a long-term deal that would guarantee the peaceful nature of the Iranian nuclear program by July 2014. The deadline was later extended to November 24.
At the latest round of talks between Iran and the P5+1 countries held in Vienna, the parties failed to reach a comprehensive deal on Iran's nuclear program by the earlier set November 24 deadline. The sides agreed to prolong the Geneva agreements and continue their dialogue until July 2015.