Reports from Brussels say Iran and six world powers will meet for a new round of nuclear talks before the next United Nations General Assembly session, which starts on September 16.
Michael Mann, a spokesman for European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, said on August 7 that the location of talks between negotiators from Iran and the P5+1 group still must be determined.
He said a meeting also is likely on the sidelines of the UN session, “possibly with ministers participating in some way.”
Meanwhile, Washington said U.S. and Iranian officials would meet for nuclear talks in Geneva on August 7.
The U.S. State Department said the bilateral consultations would be led by U.S. Deputy Secretary of State William Burns and would take place in the context of the P5+1 nuclear negotiations led by Ashton.
Iran and the P5+1 failed last month to meet their self-imposed deadline of July 20 to reach a permanent nuclear deal.
But the negotiators agreed to extend their talks until November 24 in order to try to bridge major differences and reach what would be a historic agreement.
A deal would see an easing of economic sanctions in return for a curb by Iran on its nuclear activities and greater access to its nuclear facilities for international nuclear inspectors.
Such an accord would be aimed at easing fears once and for all that Iran might use its civilian nuclear program to develop a nuclear bomb.
The United States and some of its allies suspect Iran’s civilian nuclear energy program is a cover for secret research on atomic weapons.
Iran says its program is solely for peaceful civilian purposes and wants punishing UN and Western sanctions lifted.
The P5+1 includes the five permanent members of the UN Security Council -- the United States, Britain, Russia, China, and France -- plus Germany.
Based on reporting by Reuters, AP, and AFP