Hundreds of Iranians took to the streets in Tehran early Friday to celebrate a breakthrough in talks with the West that may end the country’s 12-year-long nuclear crisis.
The capital’s longest street, Val-e-Asr Avenue, was lined with cars as drivers sounded their horns in approval of a framework deal intended to lead to a comprehensive agreement with world powers in June.
“Whatever the final result of the negotiations, we are winners,” 30-year-old Behrang Alavi said on Val-e-Asr at around 1:00 am as the noise reverberated around him.
“Now we will be able to live normally like the rest of the world,” he said, as people flashed V-signs for victory and danced while waving white handkerchiefs in a traditional Iranian celebration.
The scenes came after Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said key parameters of the framework for a deal had been agreed with the West, paving the way for a final deal by June 30.
It marks a major step to address the West’s concerns that Iran wants to build a nuclear bomb, with curbs being placed on Tehran’s nuclear programme.
In exchange Iran will see sanctions that have hobbled its economy being removed upon verification that the nuclear programme is peaceful.
US President Barack Obama welcomed the “historic understanding” with the Islamic republic but cautioned that more work needed to be done before a deal can be sealed.