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UN chief, Iran’s top diplomat discuss progress at Iran nuclear deal talks

Antonio Guterres, Hossein Amir-Abdollahian also discussed the situations in Yemen and the Occupied Palestinian Territory

UNITED NATIONS, August 7. /TASS/. Talks on the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) on the Iranian nuclear program were the focus of a telephone conversation between United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres and Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, the UN press service said on Sunday.

"The Secretary-General had a telephone call today with the Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Mr. Hossein Amir-Abdollahian. They discussed the JCPOA negotiations and the situations in Yemen and the Occupied Palestinian Territory," it said.

An Iranian delegation arrived in Vienna on August 3 to continue talks on the restoration of the Iran nuclear deal. Prior to that, indirect talks between the United States and Iran on this matter were held in Qatar. After the Qatar round, European External Action Service Deputy Secretary General for Political Affairs Enrique Mora, the coordinator of the talks on the Iran nuclear deal, said that the sides had failed to reach the progress they hoped for.

The Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), also known as the Iran nuclear deal, was signed between Iran, the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council (Russia, the United Kingdom, China, the United States and France) and Germany in 2015. Under the deal, Iran undertook to curb its nuclear activities and place them under the total control of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in exchange for the abandonment of the sanctions imposed previously by the United Nations Security Council, the European Union and the United States over its nuclear program.

The future of the deal was called into question after the United States’ unilateral withdrawal in May 2018 and Washington’s unilateral oil export sanctions against Teheran. Iran argued that all the other participants, Europeans in the first place, were ignoring some of their own obligations in the economic sphere, thus making the deal in its current shape senseless. This said, it began to gradually scale down its commitments under the deal.

The United States’ current president, Joe Biden, has repeatedly signaled that Washington is ready to return to the nuclear deal. Russia, the United Kingdom, Germany, China, the United States, and France have been negotiating with Iran possible restoration of the deal in its original format since April 2021.