Iran and the European Union say last year's nuclear agreement reached between Tehran and the P5+1 group of countries has opened a new chapter in bilateral relations, urging all parties to fully carry out their commitments stipulated in the deal.
Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini issued a joint statement following bilateral talks in the Iranian capital of Tehran on Saturday.
Mogherini, heading a team of seven European commissioners, arrived in Tehran on Saturday on her first visit since the nuclear agreement, dubbed the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), came into force on January 16. The JCPOA was signed on July 14, 2015 following two and a half years of intensive talks between Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council - the United States, France, Britain, China and Russia - plus Germany.
After JCPOA went into effect, all nuclear-related sanctions imposed on Iran by the European Union, the Security Council and the US were lifted. Iran has, in return, put some limitations on its nuclear activities.
According to the joint statement, Iran and the EU pledged to expand cooperation to contribute to the development of Iran's economy and social welfare, promote regional peace, stability and security and settle differences through peaceful approaches.
The two sides agreed to hold regular high-level political talks as well as annual political consultations at a ministerial level.
Iran and the 28-nation bloc will also strengthen economic, financial and banking cooperation, combat money-laundering and contribute to efforts aimed at stopping the flow of financial resources to terrorists.
They agreed to boost trade ties and investment with the EU pledging to support Iran's bid to join the World Trade Organization (WTO).
The two sides will also improve cooperation in different sectors, including agriculture, transportation, energy, non-military nuclear energy, environment, culture and human rights.
Zarif and Mogherini also vowed to support fight against terrorism, extremism and violence and help the dispatch of humanitarian aid to people in Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Afghanistan.
Earlier in the day, the Iranian foreign minister and EU foreign policy chief held a joint press conference. Mogherini also held talks with Secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani.
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