Rouhani's France Trip Preparations Underway

Rouhani's France Trip Preparations UnderwayRouhani's France Trip Preparations Underway

Ambassador to France Ali Ahani said consultations are being held to arrange an appropriate date for the upcoming visit of President Hassan Rouhani to France.

Rouhani's trip to three European destinations, including France, was first scheduled to be held on 15 November, but it was cancelled following a spate of deadly terror attacks by the Islamic State militant group in Paris, which left 130 dead and 368 injured and came as a shock to Europe.

"The French government needed to focus on the issue," Ahani said in an interview with ISNA on Tuesday. "A decision was made to postpone the trip so the meetings could produce better outcomes."

Asked about Tehran-Paris ties in recent years, Ahani said historical, wide-ranging bilateral relations were severely undermined in the shadow of disputes regarding Iran's nuclear program, cruel sanctions against the Iranian nation and the propaganda campaign of those who oppose good Iran-France ties.

Ahani said since last year, when preliminary agreements were reached in nuclear negotiations between Iran and the major world powers, the situation started to change.

"Increased exchange of visits by the two countries' officials and the urgent need for stopping terrorist groups signal that warmer relations can be expected," he said.

"With a strong desire, the two sides should continue to develop ties and help advance mutual interests."

Ahani said removal of sanctions would provide French companies with a new space for maneuver, allowing them to offset the costs imposed on them by sanctions.

"The upcoming trip of the president of French Senate would significantly help improve bilateral ties," he said.

Starting a four-day trip, President of the French Senate Gerard Larcher is to arrive in Iran on December 19 to hold talks with senior officials.