Iran military chief hails nuclear success

Armed Forces chief Hassan Firouzabadi (pictured in Tehran in 2010) congratulated the Iranian leader on the "success of the team of Iranian negotiators and thanked the president" Hassan Rouhani and officials involved in the nuclear talks (AFP Photo/Atta Kenare)

Tehran (AFP) - Iran's military chief has hailed the success of his country's negotiators in talks with world powers that secured a framework for a deal on its long-disputed nuclear programme.

The remarks by General Hassan Firouzabadi -- a close ally of supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has yet to comment on the agreement -- were published Sunday on the Revolutionary Guards' sepanews.com website.

Firouzabadi congratulated the Iranian leader on the "success of the team of Iranian negotiators and thanked the president" Hassan Rouhani and officials involved led by Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif.

Opinions in Iran have been split on the agreement since it was reached in the Swiss city of Lausanne on Thursday

Other officials have also expressed support for the agreement, which heralds the lifting of nuclear-related sanctions on Iran's economy if it sticks to the terms of the deal.

"There is no reason to party," ultra-conservative lawmaker Hamid Ressaie said on Sunday as the Iranian parliament resumed its work.

Speaker Ali Larijani, a conservative, described as "positive" the framework agreement, according to a report by ISNA news agency, as other members cautiously welcomed the deal.

Zarif asked the sceptics to be patient.

"Criticism is useful, but we are in the middle of negotiations and it is not good to expose all the details," he told state television in an interview aired on Saturday night.

"Trust us because we are also concerned. Let us negotiate for three months," he said in reference to the June 30 deadline for the conclusion of a final agreement.