US State Department
US State DepartmentiStock

The United States’ patience with Iran on returning to discussions over the 2015 nuclear deal is “not unlimited,” State Department spokesman Ned Price clarified on Wednesday, according to Reuters.

Asked at a news briefing whether there was an expiration date on the US offer from last week to resume talks, Price replied that Iran’s moves away from compliance with the 2015 agreement’s restrictions on its nuclear activities made the issue an “urgent challenge” for the United States.

“Our patience is not unlimited, but we do believe, and the president has been clear on this ... that the most effective way to ensure Iran could never acquire a nuclear weapon was through diplomacy,” he added.

Former President Donald Trump withdrew from the deal in 2018 and reimposed sanctions on Iran. The Islamic Republic, in turn, has gradually scaled back its compliance with the 2015 deal.

President Joe Biden, who has expressed a desire to return to the deal, told the Munich Security Conference last week that his administration is "prepared to re-engage in negotiations" with the UN Security Council on Iran’s nuclear program.

The White House later said that the US has accepted Europe's offer to mediate conversations with Iran regarding the 2015 nuclear deal.

Iran has said it is studying the European Union proposal but has yet to respond to it.