Almaty, Kazakhstan__A source close to the talks tells Al Monitor that the updated P5+1 proposal to be formally presented to Iran Tuesday in Kazakhstan includes some sanctions relief on the gold trade, petrochemical industry, and some small-scale banking sanctions. The source, speaking not for attribution Tuesday, said the package had originally been obtained from a permanent member of the UN Security Council late Monday, but declined to say which one.
The package makes some similar requests of Iran– to shut Fordo, stop its 20% enrichment and ship out its 20% stockpile–as the past P5+1 proposal presented to Iran last year in Baghdad, the source indicated. He did not immediately indicate what further requests of Iran were included in the revised proposal.
Iranian reaction so far was muted, but suggested that Iran thought the offer was still not sufficiently balanced between demands made of it and relief being offered.
Separately, Iran’s deputy nuclear negotiator Ali Bagheri met with China’s political director in Almaty Tuesday morning.
Plenary talks between the six powers that comprise the P5+1—the United States, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Russia and China—and Iran are due to get underway at 1:30pm local time Tuesday.
Western diplomats said Monday they would present a modified proposal that includes some sanctions relief. They also said they would like to get agreement for a follow-on technical meeting with Iran to further discuss the new proposal.
“What we will try to do here is put a modified proposal on the table, that both takes into account changes in Iran’s [nuclear] program, and is responsive to Iran’s desire for the P5+1 to recognize Iran’s needs,” a senior US official told journalists in Almaty Monday.
“The real message is for Iran to appreciate there is a path forward for them to get the relief they are seeking and have a peaceful nuclear [energy] program,” the American official said.
(Photo: Kazakhstan’s President Nursultan Nazarbayev (R) meets with Iran’s Supreme National Security Council Secretary and chief nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili in Almaty February 25, 2013. REUTERS/Shamil Zhumatov.)