US and Iranian officials met today for five hours of private bilateral talks on the sidelines of ongoing nuclear negotiations aimed at obtaining a final P5+1 agreement for a nuclear settlement with Iran.
The talks have been going fairly well, but with several key points to still sort out, the six month window from the interim deal is rapidly approaching. July 20 is not so far away anymore, and a deal might not be done by then.
But while both sides were panning the idea of an extension early on, the momentum the talks have seems to be warming many to the idea of continuing them beyond July. Iran proposed a six month extension today, allowing talks to continue into early 2015.
Western officials haven’t staked out a public position on this yet, and are likely to wait until the last minute to retain a sense of urgency in the talks. In the end though, it’s hard to imagine they’ll be willing to just walk away in July, and let the negotiations so far be for nothing.