Iranian negotiators met in Geneva Tuesday with six world powers for talks meant to reduce concerns that Iran is developing nuclear weapons.
Iranian negotiators say their proposal could lead to a breakthrough, but world leaders are approaching the talks with caution. The talks are the first since the June election of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.
"What matters is the end result, that they address the international community's concerns about the purely peaceful nature of the Iranian nuclear program," Mike Mann, spokesman for E.U. Foreign Policy Chief Catherin Ashton, said.
"We have to reach a situation at the end where they have proven, and verifiably proven, that there is no nuclear military program," he said.
Iran's uranium enrichment program is the main concern. Enriched uranium can be used either to power reactors or as a part of a nuclear bomb.
Iran insists it's not looking to build nuclear arms but has resisted attempts by the international community to verify those claims. They are under crippling economic sanctions as a result.
"We no longer want to walk in the dark and uncertainty and have doubts about the future. The aim, the path, and the time-frame (of the talks) should be clear so that we can achieve different steps within a certain time-frame," Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister said.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Iran is simply trying to buy more time and trick the West into dropping the sanctions.
"It would be a historic mistake to lift the pressure now, just before the sanctions reach their goal," he said. And particularly now we cannot give in and must keep up the pressure."
The two-day talks between Iran and the six world powers are being held in Switzerland. No final deal is expected. But if the Iranians succeed in building trust, the talks could lead to a deal in the future.