“We have never been so close to a deal as now. But the truth is that the final phase of the talks that lie before us is probably the most difficult,” Frank-Walter Steinmeier told reporters after a meeting with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly 69th session.
The minister said, “Now is the time to end this conflict.” “I hope that Iran … in view of the situation in the world and the situation in the Middle East, knows and senses that a collapse of the talks now is not permissible,” he added.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said earlier this month he was hopeful that the decision on the Iranian nuclear issue would be reached by November 24.
Speaking after a meeting with Ashton, Zarif expressed hope that given the readiness and political will demonstrated by the sides the solution could be reached within three months.
The talks between Iran and the P5+1 (five permanent members of the UN Security Council and Germany) group, which were supposed to be concluded on July 20, will continue until November 24, a day before the end of a year since the adoption of the Geneva Agreement.
The interim nuclear deal made on November 24, 2013, called for taking the first step of reciprocal actions to prove good faith in a six-month period to be followed by negotiations for a comprehensive agreement, according to which the Western governments will acknowledge the Iranian nuclear programme as civilian.
The deal was called the first step to be followed by a comprehensive agreement, which, on the one hand, should resolve the international community’s concerns about the Iranian nuclear programme and, on the other hand, remove economic sanctions that slow down Iran’s economic development.
The agreement reached by and between Iran and the P5+1 (five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council and Germany) in Geneva last year became effective on January 20, 2014.