In June 2013, reformist-backed cleric Hassan Rouhani won the presidential election in Iran and succeeded Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
Mr Rouhani, who had campaigned in favour of more freedom in Iran and a greater engagement with the international community, qualified his electoral success as “a victory for wisdom, moderation and maturity over extremism.”
The major international actors, including in Europe, expressed their readiness to work with the new Iranian president with a view to addressing international concerns about Iran's nuclear programme and improving the political and human rights situation for the people of Iran.
Since Mr Rouhani’s election, there have been some limited signs of political liberalisation in the country with regard to the rights of women, the release of some political prisoners and more freedom for the media.
At the international level, some progress has been achieved in the talks on Iran’s nuclear programme and there are prospects for lifting international sanctions imposed on Iran by the United Nations Security Council in step with positive movement by Iran on the nuclear issue.
The Parliamentary Assembly recalls that, in Resolutions 1567 (2007) and 1678 (2009), it took position in favour of a dialogue with the Parliament of Iran. It believes that such dialogue is all the more important bearing in mind Iran’s role in the Middle East and in particular in Syria, Lebanon and Iraq, as well as with respect to overall democratic security and stability in Europe.
The Assembly therefore decides to study carefully the political developments in Iran and consider ways to contribute, through parliamentary dialogue, to democratic reforms in this country.