Despite Iranian nuclear talks ending Saturday with no deal, Secretary of State John Kerry is calling the process “a very productive one,” adding that “diplomacy takes time.”
Kerry said early Sunday that negotiators went to Geneva to “narrow the differences.”
“And I can tell you without any exaggeration we not only narrowed differences and clarified those that remain, but we made significant progress in working through the approaches to this question of how one brings in a program that guarantees this peaceful nature,” he added.
“There’s no question in my mind that we are closer now, as we leave Geneva, than we were when we came, and that with good work and good faith over the course of the next weeks, we can in fact secure our goal.”
Negotiators working to temporarily halt Iran's nuclear program in exchange for the easing of sanctions failed on Saturday as France took issue with the proposed deal's ability to sufficiently curb the nation's nuclear capacities.
According to the Associated Press, the French hoped to secure tougher conditions than those agreed to by the other nations engaged in talks, including the U.S.
“I want to caution everyone from jumping to conclusions or believing premature reports or prejudging outcomes or, particularly, believing either rumors or other little parcels of information that somebody portends to know or that leak out,” Kerry said. “The fact is that the negotiations are actually taking place enormously privately, and that is a sign of the seriousness of what is taking place.“
Kerry said that he sees a “unity” in the negotiators’ position and purpose. “We are committed to have our political directors … meet in the next days, and we are also committed to returning as necessary somewhere over the next weeks, hopefully, with the goal of either building on what was done today or completing the task.”
Kerry added that it “takes time to build confidence between countries that have really been at odds with each other for a long time now – in the case of Iran, since 1979.”
“Diplomacy takes time, and all the parties here need time to fully consider the issues – very complicated, technical, difficult issues that we discussed here in the last days,” he said.
“I would emphasize also that the window for diplomacy does not stay open indefinitely,” Kerry warned.
“Each day that you don’t have an agreement, Iran will continue to enrich, and Iran will continue to put centrifuges in, and Iran will continue its program.”