Ballpark Numbers for Iranian Reactors?

mThe New York Times INTERNATIONAL Thursday, June 19, 2014

THE STRUGGLE FOR IRAQ: Conflict in Iraq Adds New Angle to U.S.-Iran Nuclear Talks, by David Sanger

VIENNA–The Iranian leadership had a message for Washington on Wednesday by President Hassan Rouhani’s chief of staff, Mohammad Nahavandian, who said to reporters at an international relations forum in Oslo:  “If President Obama really wants some cooperation on stabilizing Iraq, he might first think about speeding forward with a permanent deal over Iran’s nuclear capability.”

American and European negotiators are “growing skeptical that a deal both Mr. Obama and Mr. Rouhani can embrace–and sell at home–is possible by a deadline agreed with the Iranians last year, now a little more than a month away…

‘There’s no splitting the difference here,’ said Robert J. Einhorn, who was a crucial player on the American negotiating team until last year, and still advises the United States.  ‘If the Iranians keep taking the view that they must have the capacity to fuel power reactor, they are not going to even get in the ballpark of the numbers the U.S is talking about.”

Numbers in the ballpark are reasonable and usually can be negotiated.  This idiomatic usage derives from American baseball parks.

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