While officials are remaining typically tight-lipped on exactly where the Iranian nuclear talks stand, the latest reports out of Vienna suggest significant progress over the last few days, with growing expectations that a deal, at least a provisional one, could be finalized by Monday.
Secretary of State John Kerry confirmed that some of the issues that were holding up a deal have been “resolved,” though once again he didn’t provide any details on what those issues were or how they were settled. Terms of the pact have been largely secret, with rare leaks of minor aspects of it.
Iranian officials also suggested that the deal is “very close,” and suggested that the only question was whether every group involved in the talks had the “political will” to sign on the dotted line. Everyone seems to agree that the last couple of days of talks have been overwhelmingly positive.
On the other hand, reports of an imminent deal were emerging over a week ago, and didn’t come to pass, with Russian and Iranian officials reporting at the time that US and other Western negotiators started changing their positions.
The last extension of talks was announced late Thursday, and was scheduled to continue through Monday. That there has been no mention of a further extension is another hopeful sign that some sort of announcement could come before then.