JEDDAH: Junior Foreign Minister Alistair Burt arrived in Tehran on Friday to discuss the future of Iran’s international nuclear deal, in the first visit to the country by a British minister to Iran since US President Donald Trump withdrew from the 2015 agreement.
His visit comes as the EU tries to keep the deal alive.
Burt will also discuss Iran’s “destabilizing role” in the ongoing conflicts in Syria and Yemen, as well as the plight of dual nationals detained in Iran.
In a statement ahead of the visit, Burt said: “During my visit … I will stress that Iran’s ballistic missile program and its destabilizing activities in the Middle East must be addressed. I will also use the opportunity of my visit to push for the resolution we all want to see in the cases of the British dual nationals detained in Iran.”
Britain is seeking the release of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, a project manager with the Thomson Reuters Foundation. She was arrested in April 2016 at Tehran’s airport as she was heading back to Britain with her daughter, now aged four, after a family visit.
Burt will meet Iranian ministers, including his counterpart Abbas Araghchi, and NGOs during his two-day visit.
“As long as Iran meets its commitments under the deal, we remain committed to it as we believe it is the best way to ensure a safe, secure future for the region,” said Burt.