Text: Joint statement by EU's Ashton and Iran's Zarif on nuclear deal

Geneva (Reuters) - Here is the joint statement by European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on the agreement between Iran and six world powers on Tehran's nuclear program:

"After intensive negotiations we reached agreement today on a joint plan of action which sets out an approach toward reaching a long-term comprehensive solution.

We agreed that the process leading to this comprehensive solution will include the first steps of initial reciprocal measures to be taken by both sides for a duration of six months.

We also share a strong commitment to negotiate a final comprehensive solution.

The adoption of a joint plan of action was possible thanks to a sense of mutual respect and the determination to find a way forward which is beneficial to all of us.

The implementation of this first step creates the time and the environment needed for a comprehensive solution which remains the shared goal and on which talks will begin soon.

The work on the implementation of this first step will begin shortly.

We look forward to swift implementation which we will jointly monitor in close coordination with the IAEA.

Finally, today's agreement is a significant step towards developing our relationship in a more constructive way."

(Reporting by Stephanie Nebehay; Editing by Andrew Heavens)