U.S., Iran Make Progress on Nuclear Deal Implementation

FILE - In this Nov. 23, 2014 file-pool photo, Secretary of State John Kerry talks with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif in Vienna, Austria. Kerry plans to see Zarif this week amid Iranian complaints that it‘s not getting the sanctions relief it deserves under last year's landmark nuclear deal. (AP Photo/Ronald Zak, File-Pool)

The United States and Iran made progress Tuesday on implementing an international nuclear deal during a U.N. meeting of the countries’ chief diplomats, who said they would meet again on Friday.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif met for two-and-a-half hours after Tehran complained that it was not receiving enough sanctions relief.

“We worked on a number of key things today, we made some progress on it,” Kerry said.

“We are both working at making sure that the JCPOA –- the Iran nuclear agreement — is implemented in exactly the way that it is meant to be and that all the parties to that agreement get the benefits that they are supposed to get out of the agreement,” he added.

Zarif confirmed that the talks touched on ensuring “that we will draw the benefits that Iran is entitled to from the implementation of the agreement.”

“We agreed that we will continue to work on this and meet again on Friday to see how best we can put the necessary measures into operation and into motion in order to make sure the benefits will be there for Iranian people to enjoy,” he added.

Iranian officials have complained that the United States has not lived up to its side of the agreement, as Western banks and corporations have been reluctant to renew business ties.

But Washington has also pointed the finger at Tehran, warning that it retains the right to impose new sanctions over Iran’s ballistic missile tests.

The meeting at the United Nations was the first face-to-face encounter since January 16, when the two sides met in Vienna to formally implement the nuclear deal, which imposes controls on Tehran’s nuclear ambitions in exchange for sanctions relief.