Iran’s Zarif says extending nuclear deadline again in nobody’s interest, Khamenei talks of ‘fair compromise’

(Reuters) – Another extension to the deadline for reaching an agreement on Iran’s nuclear programme is in nobody’s interests, although not reaching a deal would not be “the end of the world”, Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Sunday.

“I don’t think if we don’t have an agreement it will be the end of the world,” Zarif told the Munich Security Conference, where he met U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and German, Russian and British officials. “But I do not believe another extension is in the interests of anybody as I did not believe this extension was either necessary or useful,” he said, referring to the June 30 deadline for a deal to limit Iran’s nuclear programme in exchange for lifting sanctions…

Meanwhile: (Reuters) – Iran’s supreme leader said on Sunday he could accept a compromise in nuclear talks and gave his strongest defense yet of President Hassan Rouhani’s decision to negotiate with the West, a policy opposed by powerful hardliners at home.

As his foreign minister met counterparties in the talks at a conference in Munich, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said he “firmly” backed a fair nuclear deal.

“I would go along with any agreement that could be made. Of course, if it is not a bad deal. No agreement is better than an agreement which runs contrary to our nation’s interests,” Ayatollah Ali Khamenei told Iranian air force personnel, according to official news agencies.

In a speech that still underlined his suspicions about Western nations that he characterized as “bullies”, Khamenei backed Rouhani’s negotiations with them and said any workable deal would mean both sides easing their demands…

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