Iran: Despite setbacks, optimism expressed on nuclear deal

Russia announced that nuclear talks between Iran and the P5+1 powers were moving along steadily, and that some 95% of a final deal had been agreed to, despite the presence of “two or three very difficult issues that remained.” Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergi Ryabkov said that the deal is feasible if there is enough political will, ahead of the November 24 deadline. Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif described the talks currently happening in New York as “serious, intense, and very frank.” The initial July deadline was extended after both sides failed to reach an agreement on reducing the number of active centrifuges within Iran.

Recent studies of the general Iranian population have found a wide base of support for a negotiated deal on its nuclear program (about 49%), according to a survey released by the Maryland Center for International and Security Studies, in cooperation with the University of Tehran. Support for the program itself, however, remains extremely high.

On a higher level, recent analysis after failure to meet IAEA deadlines by the Eurasia Group pushed the overall likelihood of a deal by November to around 40%.

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