Iran nuclear talks - who's saying what

30th March 2015, Comments 0 comments

After 18 months of talks, some of the world's top diplomats are nearing what could be the finish line for a deal on Iran's nuclear programme.

On Monday, Iranian leaders met in Lausanne, Switzerland with ministers from the United States, Russia, Britain, France, China and Germany for their first full session since missing a previous deadline in November.

A Western diplomat has described it as "yes or no" time.

Below are quotes from key players in the run-up to a new deadline midnight Tuesday for Iran and the P5+1 group of world powers to nail down the final pieces of a framework deal.

- Iran -

"Everything is linked. If all the technical issues are resolved and the questions tied to the sanctions are not, then there is no deal."

- Iranian nuclear chief Ali Akbar Salehi

"I think we can in fact make the necessary progress to be able to resolve all the issues and start writing them down in a text that will become the final agreement once it's done."

- Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif

"Getting to an accord is doable... The talks are in their final phase and are very difficult."

- Iranian top negotiator Abbas Araghchi

- World powers -

"I'm not paid to be optimistic."

- Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov

"We are here because we believe a deal can be done... But it has to be a deal which puts the bomb beyond Iran's reach."

- British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond

"I am coming here with the desire to move towards a robust agreement."

- French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius

"After 10 or almost 12 years of talks with Iran, the endgame of the lengthy talks, so to speak, is beginning here."

"The final metres are the most difficult but also the decisive ones."

- German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier

"We have never been so close to a deal."

EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini

"At some point you have to say 'yes or no'."

- Western diplomat

- Opponents to the talks -

"The dangerous accord which is being negotiated in Lausanne confirms our concerns and even worse."

- Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who also denounced the "Iran-Lausanne-Yemen axis" as "dangerous for all of humanity".

"I just don't understand why we would sign an agreement with a group of people who in my opinion have no intention of keeping their word."

- US House Speaker John Boehner to CNN.

© 2015 AFP

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