Iran, Britain discussing reopening of embassies

Photo: Iran, Britain discussing reopening of embassies / Iran

Iranian Non-Resident Chargé d'Affaires to Britain Mohammad Hassan Habibollahzadeh said on Friday that Iran and the UK are in talks over the full reopening of their embassies in the near future, IRNA reported.

ˈDiplomatic efforts and negotiations are ongoing for the opening of the UK embassy in Tehran,ˈ Habibollahzadeh said.

He noted that Iranˈs embassy in London is now delivering consular services to Iranians in the UK, adding, ˈAll the other sectors of the embassy will become active in the near future.ˈ

Relations between Iran and Britain hit an all-time low in November 2011, when the two countries shut down their diplomatic missions around Britainˈs key role in the imposition of a new set of Western sanctions against Iran and its repeated meddling with Iranˈs domestic affairs.

On November 27, 2011, Iranian lawmakers voted by a large majority to downgrade diplomatic ties with the United Kingdom, in response to Britainˈs decision to impose sanctions on the Central Bank of Iran over the allegation that Iran is pursuing non-civilian objectives in its nuclear energy program.

Two days after the decision by the Iranian parliament, hundreds of Iranian students staged a protest outside the British Embassy in Tehran and pulled down the UK flag.

On November 30, 2011, London cut off its ties with Tehran, withdrew its diplomatic staff from Iran and the Iranian Embassy in London was closed.

Iran recalled all its staff and closed its embassy in London the same day Britain recalled its diplomatic mission in Tehran due to massive protests in front of the British embassy complex by thousands of Iranian students who demanded a cut of ties with London.

Then in a meeting at the UN Headquarters in New York City on September 23, last year Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and his British counterpart discussed improvement of Tehran-London relations, Iran's nuclear energy program as well as regional developments.

Following a set of talks between the two sides, Tehran and London eventually agreed to resume diplomatic relations and announced the names of their non-resident charges d'affaires in October 2013.

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