On Wednesday, the US State Department stated that ongoing talks for the return of Iran and the US to mutual compliance in line with the historic 2015 nuclear non-proliferation agreement have weeks, not months, to be completed.
Stating that they are not talking about a protracted period of time, US State Department Spokesperson Ned Price described a “very, very short” timeline for the talks to conclude productively.
He added, “We are talking about potential weeks, not months.”
In 2018, the US under former President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and re-imposed sanctions that were lifted under the terms of the pact while issuing a slew of new economic penalties, in defiance of all the agreement’s other participants.
In retaliation, Tehran also took action away from its nuclear commitments under the international agreement in a bid to force Washinton to lift the sanctions.
On December 27, talks in Vienna, Austria to return the US and Iran to full compliance with the pact resumed. Last week, Price said that there had been modest progress on accomplishing this goal.
Russian and Iranian officials said on Saturday progress has been made in Vienna.
Meanwhile, Mikail Ulyanov who leads Russia’s delegation, said the talks are moving “slowly but steadily.”
However, while there is not a strict timeline for the talks to reach a consensus, the US is measuring progress against a narrowing window based on Iran’s continued nuclear advances, Price indicated this week.