Iran agrees to curb nuclear activity at Geneva talks

Iran has agreed to curb some of its nuclear activities in return for about $7bn (£4.3bn) in sanctions relief, after days of intense talks in Geneva.

US President Barack Obama welcomed the deal, saying it included “substantial limitations which will help prevent Iran from building a nuclear weapon”.

Iran agreed to give better access to inspectors and halt some of its work on uranium enrichment.

President Rouhani said the interim deal recognised Iran’s nuclear “rights”.

But he repeated, in a nationwide broadcast, that his country would never seek a nuclear weapon.

Tehran denies repeated claims by Western governments that it is seeking to develop nuclear weapons. It insists it must be allowed to enrich uranium to use in power stations.

The deal will last for six months allowing time for the negotiation of a more permanent agreement.

The deal comes just months after Iran elected Mr Rouhani – regarded as a relative moderate – as its new president, in place of the hard-line Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

It has also been backed by Iran’s Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

After four days of negotiations, representatives of the so-called P5+1 group of nations – the US, the UK, Russia, China, France and Germany – reached an agreement with Iran in the early hours of Sunday.

Key points of the deal have been released by the White House:

Iran will stop enriching uranium beyond 5%, the level at which it can be used for weapons research, and reduce its stockpile of uranium enriched beyond this point
Iran will give greater access to inspectors including daily access at Natanz and Fordo nuclear sites
There will be no further development of the Arak plant which it is believed could produce plutonium
In return, there will be no new nuclear-related sanctions for six months if Iran sticks by the accord
Iran will also receive sanctions relief worth about $7bn (£4.3bn) on sectors including precious metals

US Secretary of State John Kerry said the agreement would make the region safer for its allies, including Israel.

Eric Write/a>