British PM Boris Johnson urged Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani to cease confrontation with the US while emphasizing London’s commitments to Tehran’s nuclear agreement, Downing Street said.
Johnson “called for an end to hostilities” and said Britain viewed the 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and world powers as “the best arrangement currently available to deliver on our goal of stopping Iran from having a nuclear weapon”, his spokesperson said.
In a 20-minute call, Downing Street said Johnson wanted to “deliver the clear message” to Iran that “there is an urgent need for de-escalation”.
Rouhani told Johnson during the phone call that all the steps Iran has taken in reaction to the US’ unilateral withdrawal from the nuclear deal in May 2018 are reversible, the Iranian president’s office said in a statement.
Iran is willing to fully restore its nuclear commitments if the European parties to the agreement “go back to their (own) commitments” and help Tehran circumvent US sanctions, which were imposed by Washington in the wake of its withdrawal.
US President Donald Trump had earlier stated that “the time has come” for Britain, Germany, France, Russia and China to follow Washington’s lead and abandon the existing nuclear agreement, which sets limits on Iran’s enrichment levels.
His office also said he asked Johnson to “reconsider” his position towards Soleimani, whose death the British PM said he did not regret.