New round of Iranian nuclear talks set for this month

Iran’s Supreme National Security Council (SNCS) confirmed the talks were agreed to after a phone conversation between Deputy SNSC Secretary Ali Baqeri and Ashton’s deputy Helga Schmid, according to Iran’s official Islamic Republic News Agency.

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There was no word Tuesday about whether direct talks between Iran and the U.S. would take place at the meeting, which Vice President Biden said this past weekend that the Obama administration would be open to if Iran was serious about the negotiations.

The last time the talks between the P5+1 group and Iran were held was in June, but there was little agreement reached over Iran’s nuclear program.

The U.S. and its allies suspect Iran is seeking to develop nuclear weapons, while Iran says its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only.

Both the European Union and the U.S. have passed sanctions in the past year that have wreaked havoc on Iran’s economy, in an attempt to drive Iran to the bargaining table.

President Obama has said all options are on the table, including military force, to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. Obama’s nominee for Defense secretary, former Sen. Chuck Hagel (R-Neb.), said at his confirmation hearing last week that he would focus on preparing the military for any Iran contingency.