No Deal in Sight on Final Day of Iran Nuclear Talks

Six world powers met in Kazakhstan’s commercial hub, Almaty to discuss Iran’s nuclear program.
Getty Images
Six world powers met in Kazakhstan’s commercial hub, Almaty to discuss Iran’s nuclear program.

By Reuters

Published April 06, 2013.
  • Print
  • Share Share
  • Single Page

Six world powers and Iran met for a second day on Saturday with scant hope of striking a breakthrough deal to ease concern that Tehran may be trying to develop nuclear weapons capability, a dispute that could escalate into a new Middle East war.

Negotiators failed to narrow their differences when the two-day meeting began on Friday, which followed a round of talks in February, also in Kazakhstan’s commercial hub, Almaty.

The final day of negotiations was unlikely to achieve more than a willingness to keep talking. Iran responded on Friday to an offer of limited relief from sanctions with a proposal of its own that puzzled Western diplomats and which Russia said raised more questions than answers.

Iran’s critics accuse it of covertly seeking the means to make nuclear bombs and say Tehran in the past has used diplomacy as a stalling tactic. Further inconclusive talks will not reassure Israel, which says it could launch air strikes to stop its arch-enemy from getting the bomb, if necessary.

The Jewish state is widely believed to have the Middle East’s only nuclear arsenal.

With all sides aware that a breakdown in diplomacy could move the stand-off a step closer to war, no one in Almaty was talking about abandoning diplomatic efforts. But an actual deal seemed as far away as ever.

“We had a substantive exchange. But there is still a wide gulf between the parties. We are considering how we move on from here,” said one Western diplomat after Friday’s discussions.

On Saturday morning, European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton - the six world powers’ lead negotiator - held a bilateral meeting with her Iranian counterpart.

Iranian state television said Iranian officials also conducted very “fruitful” bilateral meetings with the Chinese and Russian delegations before the wider negotiations resumed at around noon (0600 GMT), but it gave no details.

Beijing and Moscow - which both have commercial ties with Tehran - have backed U.N. Security Council sanctions resolutions imposed on the Islamic state since 2006 but have criticised separate, harsher Western punitive steps against the big oil producer.

The talks between Iran and the powers later adjourned for lunch before resuming around 4.30 p.m. (1030 GMT), the semi-official Iranian news agency Fars said.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • You wouldn't think that a Soviet-Jewish immigrant would find much in common with Gabriel Garcia Marquez. But the famed novelist once helped one man find his first love. http://jd.fo/f3JiS
  • Can you relate?
  • The Forverts' "Bintel Brief" advice column ran for more than 65 years. Now it's getting a second life — as a cartoon.
  • Half of this Hillel's members believe Jesus was the Messiah.
  • Vinyl isn't just for hipsters and hippies. Israeli photographer Eilan Paz documents the most astonishing record collections from around the world:http://jd.fo/g3IyM
  • Could Spider-Man be Jewish? Andrew Garfield thinks so.
  • Most tasteless video ever? A new video shows Jesus Christ dying at Auschwitz.
  • "It’s the smell that hits me first — musty, almost sweet, emanating from the green felt that cradles each piece of silver cutlery in its own place." Only one week left to submit! Tell us the story of your family's Jewish heirloom.
  • Mazel tov to Chelsea Clinton and Marc Mezvinsky!
  • If it's true, it's pretty terrifying news.
  • “My mom went to cook at the White House and all I got was this tiny piece of leftover raspberry ganache."
  • Planning on catching "Fading Gigolo" this weekend? Read our review.
  • A new initiative will spend $300 million a year towards strengthening Israel's relationship with the Diaspora. http://jd.fo/q3Iaj Is this money spent wisely?
  • Lusia Horowitz left pre-state Israel to fight fascism in Spain — and wound up being captured by the Nazis and sent to die at Auschwitz. Share her remarkable story — told in her letters.
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.