Brussels, Nov 24 (IANS) The leaders of the European Union (EU) Sunday hailed the agreement reached between Iran and Western powers over Tehran's nuclear programme as a major breakthrough for global security and stability.
The P5+1 group - the five UN Security Council permanent members Britain, China, France, Russia and the US plus Germany - and Iran reached a first-step agreement on Iran's nuclear programme early Sunday morning in Geneva.
"It is now important that all parties continue to cooperate in a constructive spirit in the implementation of the agreement so that clear guarantees can be given to the international community regarding the peaceful and civilian nature of Iran's nuclear programme as well as a full cooperation with the IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency)," Xinhua quoted European Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso as saying in a statement.
"This is an important step forward for both Iran and the rest of the international community towards providing assurances that guarantee the peaceful nature of the Iranian nuclear programme," European Council president Herman Van Rompuy said in a separate statement.
"Addressing effectively this question will have significant regional and global effects," Van Rompuy said.
"It will reduce political tensions, contribute to build trust and support the promotion of non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction."
He said the step showed the commitment and courage by all parties, including by Iran under newly elected President Hassan Rohani.
"It is now crucial to ensure punctual implementation of the agreement reached and to continue working, on the basis of the trust that is being built, towards a definitive settlement of this issue," said Van Rompuy.
According to the White House, in the agreement reached early Sunday morning, Iran has been committed to halting enrichment above 5 percent and neutralising its stockpile of near-20 percent uranium by means of dilution or converting.
Furthermore, Iran has been committed not to installing more centrifuges, halting work at its plutonium reactor at Arak, and allowing inspectors from the IAEA daily access to its enrichment facilities at Natanz and Fordow, the White House said.