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November 23, 2013

Around the World and Nation

Iran nuclear talks said to be down to fine print stage but final differences proving tough

GENEVA (AP) — An Iran nuclear deal within reach, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and five other foreign ministers focused Saturday on the fine print of a draft agreement meant to satisfy not only the other side, but also to placate powerful domestic forces that fear giving too much for too little in return.

Diplomats refused to spell out details of the talks, held in a five-star Geneva hotel. But comments from both sides suggested negotiations focused on detailed wording that could be key in shaping an agreement that both sides could live with.

Even though diplomats were said to be close to a deal after four days of talks, they also warned against expectations that a final agreement was imminent due to the complexity of the issues and the stakes for all sides.

The goal is to hammer out an agreement to freeze Iran’s nuclear program for six months, while offering the Iranians limited relief from crippling economic sanctions. If the interim deal holds, the parties would negotiate final-stage agreements to ensure Iran does not build nuclear weapons.

Only then would the most crippling sanctions on Iranian oil sales and financial transactions be rolled back.

After JFK: Lyndon Johnson quickly assumed power, but VP succession is not always smooth

NEW YORK (AP) — As President John F. Kennedy lay dying 50 years ago at Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, Vice President Lyndon Johnson was hurried into a small room in Minor Medicine, where he stood silently against a wall. After a wait of some 35 minutes, presidential aide Kenneth O’Donnell entered and approached Johnson, who had been two cars behind Kennedy when the shots were fired in Dealey Plaza.

“He’s gone,” O’Donnell told him.

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