Britain Eager to Expand Regional Cooperation with Iran

Britain Eager to Expand Regional Cooperation with Iran
Wed Aug 5, 2015 17:17:02

Britain Under-Secretary of State Tobias Ellwood says London is keen on expanding consultations and cooperation with Iran to reach political solutions for regional issues, Al-Alam News Network reports.

Iran's non-resident charge d'affaires to Britain Mohammad Hassan Habibollahzadeh met with British Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Tobias Ellwood in London and conferred on the prospect of mutual cooperation, as well as bilateral and regional issues.

The British diplomat welcomed Iran’s nuclear deal and its effective role on establishing a common understanding for cooperation and constructive interaction between the two countries, saying “London-Tehran relations have a considerable capacity for expansion and Britain is keen on settling the remaining differences as fast as possible so that the two countries can begin serious discussions on bilateral issues.”

Ellwood stressed that his country intends to establish ‘constructive relations’ with the Islamic Republic.

The Iranian official, for his part, expressed hope for the reopening of UK-Iran embassies in the near future, highlighting the need for creating the necessary conditions to advance Tehran-London relations.

Habibollahzadeh referred to Iran’s principled positions on regional developments and the country’s serious efforts in fighting terrorism and extremism in the region, adding “after the conclusion of nuclear negotiations and the release of the JCPAC, the Islamic Republic has made it one of its top priorities to expand regional cooperation and develop relations with its neighbors.”

Earlier this June, Habibollahzadeh said Iran and the UK have been exchanging delegates over the past year to discuss the reopening of embassies in both countries "once some issues are resolved."

In 2011, Iranian lawmakers voted by a large majority to downgrade diplomatic ties with the United Kingdom, in response to Britain's decision to impose sanctions on the Central Bank of Iran over the allegation that Iran was pursuing non-civilian objectives in its nuclear energy program. Following the nuclear accord between Iran and the 5+1 group of countries on July 14 in Vienna, relations have begun thawing between the Islamic Republic and some major western countries.

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