31 Mar 2015 – Diplomats in Lausanne, Switzerland, are sending reporters mixed signals as negotiations between the P5+1 and Iran enter the last day before a self-imposed deadline to reach a political framework agreement for curtailing Iran’s nuclear program. According to the Associated Press, negotiators are preparing to issue a joint statement from all participating parties stating that enough progress has been made to continue work on a comprehensive agreement. The Joint Plan of Action, which has facilitated the talks so far, will be in effect until June, which would be the deadline for a final deal. Negotiators will release with the joint statement a series of additional documents detailing the technical progress made so far. The plan for an announcement has not been finalized. The report of the statement follows several days of long meetings. After leaving the talks briefly yesterday to return to Moscow, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov returned to the negotiations today. Though on Sunday he told reporters he is “not paid to be optimistic,” this morning he said that “chances are high” for a deal. However, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier told the BBC today, “I have been telling the German press we are in a bit of a crisis. Perhaps we will try a bit of a new approach. We will see.” Israel, which is not party to the negotiations, lashed out at the talks on Monday, saying that an agreement would reward Iran for its regional “aggression” in Yemen.   /