Negotiators for six major governments conferred on how to haggle with Iran over atomic assets of potential use to build nuclear bombs, Reuters reports.
The five permanent U.N. Security Council member nations and Germany discussed the matter at a high-level gathering on Wednesday in Brussels, Belgium, less than two weeks before they are expected to join Iran to begin formulating the core components of a possible long-term atomic settlement. The six powers are seeking to rein in efforts that could enable the Persian Gulf power to construct nuclear arms, though Tehran maintains its atomic activities are solely peaceful.
Participants offered no specifics on the latest meeting of envoys from China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States.
A spokeswoman for European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, though, said the session was “useful.” Ashton has communicated with Tehran on behalf of the “P-5+1” powers.
An envoy tied to the six nations cited a “need to elaborate our positions” for the negotiations, which are set to resume with Iran on May 13 in Vienna. Several significant differences remain between Tehran and the other negotiating governments, though the sides recently appeared to achieve traction in a dispute over an unfinished Iranian heavy-water reactor capable of generating bomb-usable plutonium.
Speaking anonymously, one diplomat suggested a disagreement over Iran’s uranium-enrichment capacity would remain unresolved until “July 19 in the evening,” when an interim atomic deal reached in November is set to expire.
Iran is currently using roughly 10,000 centrifuges to refine uranium, a process capable of generating peaceful material as well as nuclear-bomb fuel. The United States and its allies would likely seek to reduce Tehran’s quantity of the machines to no more than a few thousand, according to Reuters.
Meanwhile, Iranian media said Tehran has received all $4.2 billion in seized revenue it was promised under the six-month interim pact, the London Guardian reported on Thursday.
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With three days until the first debate, the polls are coming fast and furious. The latest round:
- An Associated Press/Gfk poll of registered voters found very few voters committed, with Clinton leading Trump, 37% to 29%, and Gary Johnson at 7%.
- A McClatchy-Marist poll gave Clinton a six-point edge, 45% to 39%, in a four-way ballot test. Johnson pulls 10% support, with Jill Stein at 4%.
- Rasmussen, which has drawn criticism for continually showing Donald Trump doing much better than he does in other polls, is at it again. A new survey gives Trump a five-point lead, 44%-39%.
In contrast to Hillary Clinton's meticulous debate practice sessions, Donald Trump "is largely shunning traditional debate preparations, but has been watching video of…Clinton’s best and worst debate moments, looking for her vulnerabilities.” Trump “has paid only cursory attention to briefing materials. He has refused to use lecterns in mock debate sessions despite the urging of his advisers. He prefers spitballing ideas with his team rather than honing them into crisp, two-minute answers.”
Donald Trump "is on the precipice of becoming the only major-party presidential candidate this century not to reach out to millions of American voters whose dominant, first or just preferred language is Spanish. Trump has not only failed to buy any Spanish-language television or radio ads, he so far has avoided even offering a translation of his website into Spanish, breaking with two decades of bipartisan tradition."
Bill and Hillary Clinton have purchased the home next door to their primary residence in tony Chappaqua, New York, for $1.16 million. "By purchasing the new home, the Clinton's now own the entire cul-de-sac at the end of the road in the leafy New York suburb. The purchase makes it easier for the United States Secret Service to protect the former president and possible future commander in chief."