E3+3 and Tehran hold lengthy technical talks
By Lénaïc Vaudin d’Imécourt | Wednesday 04 July 2012
After over 15 hours of technical discussions, experts from the E3+3 (France, Germany, the UK, China, Russia and the US) and Iran agreed to continue high-level negotiations on Tehran’s nuclear programme. The meeting, which took place in Istanbul, Turkey, on 3 July, and ended the following morning, was meant to allow both sides to clarify their proposals in order to avoid the stalling of the next round of political talks.
“The E3+3 provided further details of its proposal given to Iran in Baghdad; Iran shared further details of its proposal; and the experts explored positions on a number of technical subjects,” a statement by a spokesperson for the EU’s high representative said. The meeting will be followed by another one between Helga Schmid, deputy secretary-general of the European External Action Service (EAS), and Ali Bagheri, deputy secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, but the date and the venue have yet to be confirmed.
The E3+3 and Iran have already met for three rounds of political talks since they resumed their meetings in April, without reaching any major breakthroughs.
Following the entry into force of EU’s oil embargo on Iran, on 1 July, Tehran has threatened to close the Strait of Hormuz, a transit route for almost one-fifth of the oil traded worldwide. Over 120 Iranian parliamentarians have signed a petition calling for a plan to block passage for tankers carrying oil to countries that adopted sanctions against Tehran.
On 1 July, the EU implemented a January decision against Iran, banning all oil imports from the country and terminating agreements by EU insurers and re-insurers to provide liability insurance for the transport of Iranian crude.