EU Foreign Policy Chief Reiterates Offer for Iran Talks

Iran Welcomes Offer, But Will Talks Ever Happen?

The European Union’s Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton has reiterated an invitation to hold November talks with the Iranian government regarding their civilian nuclear energy program.

Iran welcomed the latest call, as indeed they welcomed the previous one, calling on EU officials to “set a date.” But as November nears the back and forth lip-service about the talks has many wonder if they are ever going to actually happen.

Iran has agreed in principle to the talks a number of times since early this summer, and each agreement comes with a new offer of talks from some high ranking Western official. This too is accepted and the process repeats.

In the end it appears much akin to the “third party enrichment” deal the sides reached last year, with Western officials insisting Iran’s acceptances don’t amount to “formal replies” and subsequent allegations that Iran isn’t responding to overtures.

Not that there appears to be much to talk about. Iran has already indicated that its civilian program is not up for debate and some Western officials insist nothing short of a full dismantlement of the program will do.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.