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Qatar welcomes Iran nuclear deal, calls it step toward greater stability in region

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    EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton, left, with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, center, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, right, delivers a statement during a ceremony at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, Sunday, Nov. 24, 2013. Iran struck a historic deal Sunday with the United States and five other world powers, agreeing to a temporary freeze of its nuclear program in the most significant agreement between Washington and Tehran after more than three decades of estrangement. (AP Photo/Keystone, Martial Trezzini)The Associated Press

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    In this photo released by the Iranian Students News Agency, ISNA, Iranians wave their national flag as they hold a poster of President Hassan Rouhani, while welcoming Iranian nuclear negotiators upon their arrival from Geneva at the Mehrabad airport in Tehran, Iran, Sunday, Nov. 24, 2013. Hundreds of cheering supporters greeted Iran's nuclear negotiators as they arrived back to Tehran late Sunday night. Tehran agreed Sunday to a six-month pause of its nuclear program while diplomats continue talks. International observers are set to monitor Iran's nuclear sites as the West eases about $7 billion of the economic sanctions crippling the Islamic Republic. (AP Photo/ISNA,Hemmat Khahi)The Associated Press

Qatar is the latest Gulf Arab state to welcome the nuclear deal between Iran and world powers, calling it a step toward greater stability in the region.

The Gulf's main political power, Saudi Arabia, has previously expressed unease about U.S. outreach to Iran. The dialogue helped pushed along efforts by Washington and others to strike a deal with Iran seeking to ease Western concerns that Tehran could move toward nuclear weapons.

Saudi officials have withheld public comment on the first-step deal signed on Sunday in Geneva, but smaller Gulf partners have backed the accord.

Qatar's Foreign Ministry said on Monday that the deal is an "important step toward safeguarding peace and stability in the region."

Bahrain, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates have issued similar statements.