Breakthrough in the negotiation process which has lasted for years: the E3+3 negotiators from the three EU states Germany, France and Britain, plus the US, Russia and China, agreed on an interim deal with Iran on Sunday night (24 November) after four days of negotiations.
Foreign Minister Westerwelle called the agreement with Iran a “turning point”.
“We have taken a major step towards our goal of preventing a nuclear‑armed Iran”, Westerwelle continued.
Mutual trust and swift progress in negotiations were now needed – after a decade of negotiations that also saw standstills and confrontation, we have reached political agreement on the initial important steps for the first time today.
We need to use the upcoming months to build mutual trust. It is vital for the agreements to be implemented in a transparent and verifiable manner and for the negotiations to make swift progress towards a comprehensive solution. We are ready to do this and expect the same from the Iranian leadership.
The talks which began on 20 November were the third round of negotiations with Iranwithin a period of five weeks. The aim of the E3+3 group was to work with Iran to find a way to enter an initial phase of concrete trust‑building steps. The EU High Representative Catherine Ashton and the Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif were assisted in this endeavour by senior officials from the E3+3 countries.
Following signs of progress in the talks, at the weekend the E3+3 Foreign Ministers had travelled to Geneva in order to take part in the negotiations in person.