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Iran calls Obama's 10-year nuclear demand 'unacceptable'

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Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry met a day after Obama told Reuters that Iran must commit to a verifiable halt of at least 10 years on sensitive nuclear work for a landmark atomic deal to be reached.

"Iran will not accept excessive and illogical demands," Zarif was quoted by Fars as saying.

"Obama’s stance ... is expressed in unacceptable and threatening phrases," he was reported as saying, adding that talks with Kerry in Switzerland would nonetheless carry on.

Despite the tough tone of Zarif's remarks quoted by Fars, the Iranian minister struck a more conciliatory note when he spoke to reporters after his morning talks with Kerry.

Asked if the two sides had reached an agreement, Zarif replied: "We'll try, that's why we are here."

"The only way to move forward is through negotiations."

Kerry told reporters: "We're working away. Productively."

The two sides have set a deadline of late March to reach a framework agreement and of June for a comprehensive final settlement to curb Iran's nuclear activity to ensure it cannot be put to bomb making in return for easing economic sanctions.

Iran wants a swift end to sanctions in any deal -- one of the sticking points in the high-level negotiations.

http://news.yahoo.com/iran-rejects-obamas-demand-10-nuclear-halt-fars-105319674.html

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