May 13 (Reuters) – The U.S. State Department said on Friday it appreciated the European Union’s efforts to revive talks on restoring the 2015 Iran nuclear deal but said there was no agreement yet and no certainty that one might be reached.
“At this point a deal remains far from certain. Iran needs to decide whether it insists on extraneous conditions and whether it wants to conclude a deal quickly, which we believe would serve all side’s interests. We and our partners are ready, and have been for some time. It’s now up to Iran,” said a U.S. State Department spokesperson on condition of anonymity.
The EU’s foreign policy chief said on Friday he believed there had been enough progress during consultations between his envoy and Iranian officials in Tehran this week to relaunch nuclear negotiations after two months of deadlock. Read full story
Talks to revive Iran‘s accord with world powers have been on hold since March, chiefly over Tehran’s insistence that Washington remove the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps from its list of designated foreign terrorist organizations.
Asked if Iran still demanded the removal of the IRGC, which controls elite armed and intelligence forces that Washington accuses of a global terrorist campaign, from the list the State Department spokesperson replied: “We are not negotiating in public but the bottom line is that there is no deal and no certainty of one.”
(Reporting By Arshad Mohammed in Saint Paul, Minn.; Editing by Chris Reese and Angus MacSwan)