On Wednesday, National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan warned time is running out on the Vienna Iran nuclear deal talks and said the deadline will come “within weeks” if an agreement isn’t reached.
Sullivan said there is “still room for a diplomatic effort,” but warned the timeframe to reach a deal is not long. He made the comments from Israel, where he met with Israeli officials and reportedly assured them the US was willing to take a harder line on Iran if necessary.
The Vienna talks are currently on pause and are set to resume on Monday, December 27th. Since the negotiations restarted, the US and its European allies have been accusing Iran of not taking the talks seriously. Meanwhile, the US has ramped up the pressure on Tehran with new sanctions and close coordination with Israel.
Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian addressed the criticism from the European JCPOA signatories. “We do not see the position of some European countries as constructive, specifically that of France,” he said on Thursday.
“When they say they are concerned about the progress of Iran’s nuclear program, we say out loud: ‘If you want to have your concerns addressed, then all sanctions must be lifted,'” Amirabdollahian added.
The US wants Iran to accept a draft agreement that was reached with the previous Iranian government during earlier negotiations. But Iran wants more sanctions relief than the Biden administration is willing to give and submitted two draft proposals dealing with sanctions and Iran’s nuclear commitments.