Middle East

Iran press urges nuclear progress

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif smiles during a news conference after nuclear talks at the United Nations European headquarters in Geneva November 10, 2013.
Image caption Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif says his country is ready for a deal

Newspapers in Iran are cautiously optimistic about a fresh round of talks between Tehran and world powers on the country's nuclear programme.

Most papers are giving front-page coverage to the talks, with some saying Iran has played its part and now the possibility of a positive outcome depends on the West.

Some papers are also linking the talks with Tuesday's bombing outside the Iranian embassy in the Lebanese capital Beirut, saying it was aimed at undermining the negotiations in Geneva.

'Practical steps' needed

Conservative newspaper Keyhan says Iran has taken several "confidence-building" measures, and that now it is the P5+1 group of nations' turn to take practical steps towards a positive outcome.

The paper's analysis - headlined "Iran to make no more concessions, it is the turn of the 5+1" - says Tehran has already yielded sufficient ground to the 5+1, and that this view has received at least some backing from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

"The IAEA quarterly report released last week says Iran has already undertaken its confidence building measures in the last three months," it argues.

Another conservative daily, Jomhuri-ye Eslami, says the P5+1 nations should end the "unnecessary controversy" over Iran's nuclear programme.

"The Iranian government and the nation want nothing else but their legal rights to be respected. Iranian authorities have repeatedly defined these rights as peaceful nuclear activities, enrichment and the peaceful use of processed nuclear materials, and they consider it as their red lines.

"All P5+1 members should realise the fact that no one in Iran would allow that these legal rights to be ignored. If the P5+1 acts in line with legal provisions, it would naturally agree to sign an agreement with the Iranian delegation and end the unnecessary controversy that has continued for the last 10 years," the paper adds.

A commentary in pro-government Iran newspaper says "Iran has participated in the new round of talks from the position of strength and it seems the required ground has been paved for the parties to reach an agreement".

The paper sounds optimistic, but warns Iranian negotiators that no deal should be reached at the cost of Tehran's nuclear rights.

"The negotiating team is faced with two difficult tasks. First, it should not yield on the country's nuclear rights. Second, it should establish interactions with P5 +1 countries, reduce mistrust and provide a way of interaction in the political arenas in the world," the commentary says.

An article in reformist daily E'temad argues that those who oppose the talks will end up being "losers" as proximity between between Iran and the West grows.

The paper further warns that certain groups "will resort to some kind of manoeuvring in the last hours of the Geneva talks in order to influence it".

'Targeting Geneva talks'

Some Iranian papers link the nuclear issue to Tuesday's twin suicide bombings in Beirut, which killed at least 23 people. They imply that the blasts, for which the Sunni jihadist group Abdullah Azzam Brigades has claimed responsibility, are the work of unspecified opponents of a nuclear deal.

In a front-page report on the attacks, the nationalist daily Javan "once again on the threshold of Iran and P5+1 talks, Iran was targeted by a terrorist attack".

The provincial daily Khorasan, in an editorial headlined "bombing in Beirut targets Geneva", says "such actions are meant to elicit strong reactions from Iran in order to divert it from constrictive efforts".

"In the current situation is trying to create positive mood in world public opinion, and is seeking a constructive and systematic interaction with the international community. However, certain elements are involved in a damaging movement against Iran," it adds.

An editorial in the conservative daily Qods' - headlined "Message of Beirut blasts" - says some countries "are seriously angered by the latest development in the negotiations in Geneva, as well America's clear willingness to address its problems with Iran".

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