British lawmakers to visit Iran to help rebuild ties
British lawmakers to visit Iran to help rebuild ties

British parliamentarians are to visit Iran next week to try to organise a reciprocal visit by Iranian lawmakers, the latest step aimed at improving relations between the two countries.

Britain severed direct diplomatic relations with Iran after activists stormed its embassy in Tehran more than two years ago.

Britain appointed a non-resident charge d'affaires to Iran in November, reviving direct ties, a step mirrored by Tehran. Britain's envoy visited Tehran this month, the first diplomatic visit by a British official in more than two years.

On Monday, the office of Jack Straw, a former British foreign secretary, released a statement saying he would be part of a four-man delegation to visit Tehran from Jan. 6 to Jan. 10.

The statement said that the delegation will be made up of members of the British parliament's All-Party Parliamentary Group on Iran, noting they had accepted an invitation from the Iranian parliament's British/ Iran Friendship Group.

Other members of the delegation are Norman Lamont, a former British finance minister, Ben Wallace, a Conservative lawmaker, and Jeremy Corbyn, a Labour parliamentarian.

Iran's Press TV said on its website that the British delegation would hold talks with Majlis Speaker Ali Larijani, Chairman of the Majlis's National Security and Foreign Policy Committee "Alaeddin Boroujerdi", and other Iranian officials.

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