July 14, 2014 4:41 am

Kerry, top Iranian diplomat to hold in-depth talks amid faltering negotiations

This June 12, 2014 file photo shows Secretary of State John Kerry listens during a meeting between President Barack Obama and Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott, in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington.

AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File

VIENNA, Austria – Secretary of State John Kerry will hold in-depth discussions Monday with Iran’s top diplomat in a bid to advance faltering nuclear negotiations, with a deadline just days away for a comprehensive agreement.

The scheduled talks come a day after Kerry and the foreign ministers of Britain, France and Germany failed to reach a breakthrough on uranium enrichment and other issues standing in the way of a deal that would curb Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for the end of sanctions on Tehran.

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Each of the top officials met with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif. Russia and China sent lower-level officials to Austria’s capital for this week’s gathering.

The six world powers and Tehran will need to continue negotiations until July 20 and could decide to extend those talks past that informal deadline for a deal.

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