Wednesday, 20 January, 2016

Canada signals openness to restoring Iran diplomatic ties

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Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Monday expressed an openness to restoring diplomatic ties with Iran, four years after Canada shuttered its embassy in Tehran, AFP reported.

Referring to the implementation of the nuclear agreement between Iran and the 5+1 group, Trudeau said Iran had made “significant movement towards respecting international expectations”.

“That is something positive and I expect there will be (diplomatic) links now between Canada and Iran,” he said.

“We will certainly be discussing that further at a cabinet meeting in the coming weeks,” he added.

Canada broke diplomatic ties with Iran in September 2012.

In July, Iran and global powers reached a deal in Vienna that saw sanctions lifted this weekend.

On Sunday, Canadian Foreign Affairs Minister Stephane Dion told the Globe and Mail newspaper that Ottawa would decide “in a timely fashion” whether to also lift sanctions in order to allow Canadian companies to join US and EU firms rushing to do business in Iran.

“Because if other countries move before us, it’s not a way to help our industry,” he said, adding that Canadian sanctions alone would not be very effective.

On Saturday, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini announced that sanctions imposed on Tehran have been lifted as the nuclear agreement came into force after the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) confirmed Iran had kept its commitments to the historic deal.

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