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VIENNA — Nuclear negotiators failed to meet a Monday deadline for a deal that would ease international concerns about Iran's atomic program and are poised to extend the negotiations for a comprehensive agreement until July 2015, diplomats said. Under the terms of limited agreements reached after a frenetic six days of talks in Vienna, a political accord is to be completed by March 1, with final details contained in annexes to be sealed by July 1, the diplomats said.
Iran, the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council and Germany had set a deadline of midnight Monday (6 p.m. ET) to come to a final agreement on a mechanism whereby Iran's pathways to develop a nuclear weapon would be closed in return for relief from international sanctions. Instead, British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond said it "was not possible to meet the deadline" due to wide gaps on points of contention, including levels of uranium enrichment and the number of centrifuges Iran would be allowed to operate. In the interim, expert level talks will resume in December at an as yet undetermined venue and Iran will receive about $700 million per month in frozen assets, Hammond said.