Jalili, Ashton to Hold Dinner Meeting in Istanbul

EU foreign policy head Catherine Ashton and Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili will have a dinner meeting in Turkish city of Istanbul, tonight.

The meeting is a follow up to last round of talks between Iran and the P5+1 (consisting of US, Britain, France, Russia, China and Germany) held in Almaty, Kazakhstan on April 5-6.

According to a source close to the Iranian negotiating team, the Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, Saeed Jalili is accompanied by his deputy Ali Bagheri.

“Even though it took a long time [since Almaty-II talks] but we are waiting to receive P5+1 answers to Iran’s proposal,” said Jalili after he arrived in Istanbul.

Answering to question regard possible effect of Iran’s presidential election on nuclear talks, Jalili said: “Nuclear issue is a national one and all parties have consensus on this. So the presidential election has will not affect [the talks].”

 After tonight’s meeting, two sides will likely issue a joint statement and Dr. Jalili, a candidate of Iran’s June 14 presidential election will hold a press conference in the Iranian consulate on Thursday.

“We are ready to listen to the results of Mrs. Ashton’s meeting with foreign ministers of the P5+1,” said the source speaking on condition of anonymity.

Catherine Ashton who represents the P5+1 said in the end of Almaty-II talks that the group delegation will go back to capitals to evaluate the process and later she will be in touch with Dr. Jalili in order to see how to go forward.

Ashton likely to get information about the Iran’s upcoming presidential election from Jalili, who may be the next Iranian president as he announced his candidacy for the upcoming Iranian presidential election.

Iran also started a new round of negotiations with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in Vienna on Wednesday.

The ongoing talks are the 10th round of the negotiations between Iran and the IAEA over the Islamic Republic’s nuclear energy program since early 2012.

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