World powers reacted with great reservation to the latest nuclear talks with Iran in Almaty but they maintained that there is still room to press on with further negotiations.
Britain announced that there was still a “wide gap” between the two parties’ positions. British Foreign Secretary William Hague was quoted as saying: “We look to Iran to consider carefully whether it wants to continue on its current course and face increasing pressure and isolation from the international community, or to enter into meaningful negotiations.”
The nuclear talks took place in Almaty on April 5 and 6, but the two sides failed to make a breakthrough in the dispute.
AFP reported that a senior U.S. diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity, said that Iran is expecting big results in exchange for small steps.
Russia confirmed that no agreement had been reached but maintained that the talks had been useful in relieving concerns about Iran’s nuclear activities. Ria Novosti reports that deputy foreign minister Sergey Ryabkov expressed Russia’s opposition to unilateral sanctions against Iran, adding that if Iran accepts that its nuclear program could come under complete supervision of UN inspectors, all sanctions against it must be dropped.
There has been no agreement over the date when the two parties will meet again. Despite the lack of progress in the negotiations, the United States has said that that there is still room for diplomatic efforts.