White House spokesman Josh Earnest on Monday told reporters that the Obama administration expects the latest deadline of July 7 “to slip.” The previously missed deadline was June 30.
If a nuclear deal is not completed by July 9, Congress will have 60 days to review any agreement, rather than the 30-day review period it would have if a deal is reached before that date.
U.S. State Department spokesman John Kirby said Secretary of State John Kerry is remaining in Vienna, but admitted that negotiations “are not there yet” in terms of closing off Iran’s “pathway to a nuclear weapon.”
“If we can resolve those issues this week, we’ll have a deal. If we can’t resolve them this week, we won’t have a deal,” Kirby said.
A source close to Iran’s negotiating team told the Iranian state news agency IRNA that there are still “serious differences” between Iran and world powers, but that both sides “are also serious to resolve the differences.”
According to reports, a dispute over United Nations sanctions on Iran’s ballistic missile program is holding up the deal.
“The Iranians want the ballistic missile sanctions lifted,” a Western official told Reuters. “They say there is no reason to connect it with the nuclear issue, a view that is difficult to accept. There’s no appetite for that on our part.”