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Iran nuclear talks focus on uranium enrichment

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Iran and world powers met in Vienna to try and work out an agreement on Iran's nuclear program. (Source: FOX) Iran and world powers met in Vienna to try and work out an agreement on Iran's nuclear program. (Source: FOX)

VIENNA (FOX) - Nuclear talks have started once again in Austria between Iran and six world powers.

A main issue is the enriching of uranium, which can be used for reactor fuel and in weapons.

Iran wants 100,000 enriching centrifuges. The allies want Tehran to only have a few thousand.

After hours of talks on the nuclear issues, with negotiators from Iran, Russia, China, Britain, France and Germany, the United States diplomat had an "aside" with Iranian diplomats on the growing crisis in Iraq.

With less than five weeks to determine the future scope of Iran's nuclear program, Iran and six world powers are facing a difficult deadline and appear to be softening on a July 20, target date for an agreement.

The talks hit a snag during the last sit-downs in mid-May while trying to come to a consensus on Tehran's uranium enrichment.

Tehran insists its activities are for peaceful purposes.

The European Union foreign policy chief met with Iran's foreign minister on Monday.

On Tuesday, her spokesman said all parties are working to bridge gaps in their positions.

"Obviously the most important thing is the quality of the agreement. But we are certainly going to be working as hard as we can to complete things as quickly as is possible," said Michael Mann, a spokesman for EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton.

The U.S. State Department says an informal conversation happened between U.S. Deputy Secretary of State William Burns and Iranians on the sidelines of the meeting.

Both parties are concerned about the stability of Iraq.

"It was brief, on the margins. It was separate from the discussions and negotiations that are ongoing. We're open to continuing our engagement with the Iranians just as we are engaging with other regional players on the threat posed by ISIL in Iraq," said Jen Psaki, a spokeswoman for the U.S. State Department.

The State Department doesn't expect, at this point, to further engage Iran on the Iraq crisis during the Vienna talks.

Psaki says their interactions will focus on the nuclear issues for the remainder of this week's summit.

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