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Iran, six powers holding expert-level nuclear talks in Vienna

May 12, 2015, 14:59 UTC+3 VIENNA
The talks in Vienna began with a bilateral meeting between Iran's senior negotiator, Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi, and EU political director Helga Schmid
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Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi

Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi

© AP Photo/Julie Jacobson

VIENNA, May 12. /TASS/. Iran and six world powers began an expert-level meeting about Tehran's nuclear programme on Tuesday with hopes of securing a final deal by a June 30 deadline.

The talks in Vienna, involving nuclear and other experts from Iran and the United States, France, Germany, Russia, China and Britain, began with a bilateral meeting between Iran's senior negotiator, Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi, and EU political director Helga Schmid, a source in the Iranian delegation told TASS.

Araqchi said on his arrival in Austria’s capital that a framework accord reached in Switzerland on April 2 might be turned into a full agreement even before the end of June.

He said Iran and the other countries in the talks had almost finalised drafting the final deal, but several disagreements remained between the two sides.

Negotiators are seeking "a single agreed text," Araqchi said, adding: "We think we can do that even before the deadline."

Speaking about talks in New York on the sidelines of a Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty review conference at the United Nations which finished on May 7, Araqchi said: "What we achieved in New York was the first draft of the whole package.

"Now, we have a written text though we still have lots of brackets which represent the differences we have," he added, noting that the talks in Vienna were aimed at reducing the "number of brackets" and "cleaning" the text as much as possible.

The current round of negotiations is expected to continue until Friday. Araqchi said Tehran's negotiators planned to hold bilateral meetings with counterparts from the United States, China and Russia in coming days.

Political leaders of the other world powers involved in the negotiations are due to join the talks on May 15.

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