TEHRAN, Oct. 27 (UPI) -- Iran reiterated Monday that it does not anticipate extending the Nov. 24 deadline to negotiate a comprehensive nuclear agreement.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, speaking to European diplomats in Tehran, went so far as to say that he expected an agreement would be reached ahead of the Nov. 24 deadline if all sides are determined to do so.
That optimism contrasted markedly with Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Seyed Abbas Araqchi's assessment last week that "there is no good prospect for the conclusion of the talks by the deadline."
For more than a year, delegates from the P5+1 -- five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council (Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States) plus Germany -- have held talks concerning Iran's nuclear program. Delegates are seeking concrete assurances from Iran that the country's nuclear program will be used exclusively for peaceful purposes.
Zarif, Iran's chief nuclear negotiator, toured Natanz and Fordo nuclear facilities in central Iran on Monday, where he asserted that Iran would continue a peaceful nuclear program.
"We're pushing a solution that would allow the international community to have clear insight into Iran's ability to resolve everybody's concerns about their nuclear program," White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said last week.
"In terms of the details of that agreement, I'm not going to get into that from here," Earnest said from the White House. "This is something that obviously is being discussed in a very detailed fashion by the United States and our P5-plus-1 partners and the representatives of Iran."
The U.S. also maintains it will not seek an extension to the deadline.