Tehran, Iran – Iran and the European Union agreed on Thursday to continue dialogue in Brussels with the aim of resuming talks on a failed 2015 nuclear deal between the Islamic Republic and world powers, Tehran said.

EU envoy tasked with coordinating talks on relaunching Iran nuclear deal, Enrique Mora, met with Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Ali Bagheri for several hours, as Western powers lose patience with Tehran in the face of the persistent lack of a firm date for the resumption of talks.

Dialogue on the deal has stalled since June.

“At the end of this meeting, the two sides agreed to continue the dialogue on matters of mutual interest in the coming days in Brussels,” Iranian foreign ministry said in a statement, which noted that Mora had said the EU was “ready to work with Iran”. and the other parts.

The talks coincided with a visit by EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell to Washington for talks with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, who on Wednesday warned of “other options” in case of failure of diplomacy.

At the same time, his visiting Israeli counterpart reserved the right to use force.

Foreign Minister Yair Lapid (right) and the European Union’s top diplomat Josep Borrell in Brussels on July 11, 2021 (Twitter)

The 2015 nuclear deal, which granted sanctions relief to Iran in exchange for restrictions on its nuclear activities, has been on life support since 2018, when then US President Donald Trump unilaterally withdrew .

Trump has reimposed crippling sanctions, while Iran, which insists its nuclear program is for civilian use only, has gradually rolled back its own commitments.

Mora’s trip to Tehran has been accompanied by increasing pressure from EU countries, as well as the United States, to quickly resume talks on Washington’s return to the deal.

Ahead of Thursday’s meeting with Mora, Bagheri, in charge of Iran’s nuclear file, tweeted that “removal of cruel sanctions” would be on the agenda.

‘Other options’

US President Joe Biden, who took office in January, has signaled his willingness to revert to the nuclear deal.

Talks were held earlier this year in Vienna between Iran and the other parties to the deal – Britain, China, France, Germany and Russia – with indirect U.S. participation .

Talks have been suspended since the June elections in Iran led to a change of president.

New Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi – a former ultra-conservative justice chief – is said to be less ready than his predecessor Hassan Rouhani to make concessions to the West for a revived deal.

TV cameras outside the “Grand Hotel Vienna” where closed-door nuclear talks are taking place in Vienna, Austria, June 20, 2021. (Florian Schroetter / AP)

Iran has repeatedly said it is ready to resume talks “soon”, but no date has yet been announced.

Blinken told reporters on Wednesday that he hoped the talks with Iran would be successful, but warned that “the trail left for us to do so is getting shorter and shorter.”

Referring to the threat of visiting Foreign Minister Yair Lapid to use force, Blinken said without elaborating: “We are ready to look to other options if Iran does not change its position. cap.

He also said that the United States and Israel would “consider all options to meet the challenge posed by Iran,” which some see as a more overt threat of force.

“Adventurous threats”

Tehran is seeking European guarantees that there will be no repeat of Trump’s unilateral withdrawal.

Mora attended Raisi’s inauguration in August, drawing criticism against the EU of Israel, a fierce critic of the nuclear deal with its nemesis Iran.

Israel is engaged in a shadow war with Iran, targeting its military sites in the Syrian ally and waging a campaign of sabotage against Iran’s nuclear program.

Explosions seen near the city of Aleppo in northern Syria on July 19, 2021, following an Israeli airstrike. (Screenshot / Twitter)

Iran warned Israel in a letter to the head of the United Nations Security Council on Thursday against any attack on its nuclear facilities.

“We warn the Zionist regime against any miscalculation or military adventure targeting Iran and its nuclear program,” Iranian Ambassador to the UN Majid Takht Ravanchi wrote in the letter released by the agency. Tasnim press release.

He accused Israel of taking its “provocative and adventurous threats … to alarming levels”, and said that “the Zionist regime’s” systematic and explicit threats … prove that it is responsible for the terrorist attacks against [Iran’s] peaceful nuclear program in the past.

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