Mon February 25, 2013
At Nuclear Talks: West Will Float 'Sanctions Relief;' Iran Will Take 'Hard Line'
Talks between the U.S., its allies and Iran about the Persian giant's nuclear ambitions are due to begin Tuesday in Almaty, Kazakhstan. As the time draws near, we're seeing stories about how each side will approach the discussions.
NPR's Peter Kenyon, who is in Almaty, reports that an American official who agreed to discuss with reporters the position that the U.S. and its allies will take — provided he was given anonymity — said that they will offer Iran "some sanctions relief." But, Peter also told our Newscast Desk, Iran "has shown little inclination to concede what the international side wants in return for an easing of sanctions — namely giving up production of moderately enriched uranium and closing its underground [nuclear] facility at Fordow."
Meanwhile, The New York Times reports that Iran will take a "hard line":
"When Iran's nuclear negotiating team sits down with its Western counterparts in Almaty, Kazakhstan, on Tuesday, it will offer no new plans or suggestions, people familiar with the views of the Iranian leadership say. More likely, they say, the Iranian negotiators will sit with arms crossed, demanding a Western change of heart."
At the talks, the U.S. is part of the so-called P5+1 — the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council (Britain, China, France, Russia, the U.S.) plus Germany.