U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said at a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday, Oct 23, that it was vital that Iran take action to show that its nuclear program is peaceful.
"We will need to know that actions are being taken which make it crystal clear, undeniably clear, fail-safe to the world that whatever program is pursued is indeed a peaceful program," he told reporters, according to Reuters.
Netanyahu said, however, “Iran must not have a nuclear weapons capability, which means that they shouldn't have centrifuges (for) enrichment, they shouldn't have a plutonium heavy-water plant, which is used only for nuclear weapons."
"They should get rid of (their amassed) fissile material, and they shouldn't have underground nuclear facilities, (which are) underground for one reason - for military purposes," he said, describing Iran's program as the region's foremost security problem.
Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator said Monday the country believes it can wrap up negotiations with world powers over its disputed nuclear program in one year or less.
At talks last week, the first since moderate President Hassan Rouhani's election in June, Tehran offered a three-phase plan it said could yield a breakthrough in the stand-off after years of diplomatic paralysis and increasing confrontation.
"If we see the same seriousness in future negotiations which we saw in the (October 15-16) Geneva negotiations, we believe that within six months to one year we can conclude the negotiations," Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi said in an interview with the state-owned, Arabic-language Al Alam television channel.
"Perhaps within three months or six months we can reach a conclusion regarding the first step," he said, quoted by ISNA news agency.
"Certainly there are serious differences between us and the other side," Araqchi said. "We even have deep disagreements with each other. Despite this, we are hopeful we can achieve a common resolution to this dispute."
Araqchi reiterated that Iran would not stop refining uranium, saying domestic enrichment was a right of the Iranian people - but that the extent of enrichment was negotiable.
The United States and its European allies suspect Iran is working towards a nuclear weapons capability, and have levied sanctions on Iran's energy, banking and shipping sectors that have battered the Iranian economy and caused a currency crisis. Iran denies it is after nuclear weapons, saying its uranium enrichment program is purely for peaceful energy purposes.
The six world powers dealing with the Iranian nuclear issue are the five permanent U.N. Security Council members - the United States, Russia, China, Britain and France - plus Germany.