In this Saturday, Feb. 3, 2007 file photo, an Iranian technician works at the Uranium Conversion Facility just outside the city of Isfahan 255 miles (410 kilometers) south of the capital Tehran, Iran. (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi, File)
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High-stakes talks to nail down a historic deal with Iran to curtail its nuclear program may "slip" past a June 30 deadline, a top U.S. official admitted Thursday ahead of crunch weekend negotiations in Vienna.Iran, which has engaged in something of a rapprochement with the West since the election of President Hassan Rouhani in 2013, denies wanting nuclear weapons, saying its nuclear program is exclusively peaceful.Under the Lausanne framework, which was also agreed several days late, Iran will downsize its nuclear activities in order to make any attempt to make a nuclear weapon all but impossible. Western powers have stressed that sanctions will not be lifted until the IAEA has confirmed that Iran has carried out key steps under the accord, something that Kerry said in April would take six months to a year.But Khamenei, who will have the last word for Iran in the talks, said that banking and economic sanctions imposed by the United Nations and the U.S. must be lifted immediately after the agreement is signed.
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