UK Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond has welcomed the Iran nuclear deal announced in Vienna today. The deal is the culmination of over a decade of complex negotiations.
The Foreign Secretary said:
After more than a decade of tough negotiations we have reached an historic agreement that will impose strict limits and inspections on Iran’s nuclear programme.
Under the agreement, Iran will grant the International Atomic Energy Agency access to verify adherence to the restrictions placed on its nuclear programme, giving the international community confidence that the programme is, and will remain, exclusively peaceful.
In return, once Iran has taken key steps to introduce these restrictions, the international community will lift some of its sanctions on Iran, delivering significant economic and financial benefits.
Having reached this important agreement, our focus will now be on its swift and full implementation to make sure that a nuclear weapon remains beyond Iran’s reach.
We recognise the concern in the region about Iran’s historic pattern of regional activity. We will maintain our clear position in support of the Gulf states and against Iranian interference in their internal affairs. We hope, and expect, that this agreement will herald a step-change in Iran’s relations with its neighbours and with the international community.
The removal, over time, of economic and financial sanctions represents a huge opportunity for Iranians to make positive decisions about their country’s future and its role in the region.
We will continue to work closely with our international partners to encourage Iran to play a transparent and constructive role in regional affairs, particularly in the struggle against violent Islamist extremism.