The Iranian foreign minister said his resignation in a surprise announcement on his Instagram account.
Javad Zarif apologised for his “shortcomings” during his tenure. “I apologise for not being able to continue in the post and for all the shortcomings and flaws in the period,” he wrote. However, he offered no clear reason for his resignation.
He played a major role in negotiating the 2015 nuclear agreement between Iran and major international powers but the future of that deal has been tenuous since US President Donald Trump ended US involvement.
His resignation was confirmed by Iran’s state-run news agency.
The 59-year-old was educated in the US and holds a PhD in international law from the University of Denver. He has served as Iran’s ambassador to the UN and became foreign minister in 2013 after President Hassan Rouhani was elected promising a more moderate, outward-looking Iran.
It is not clear if his resignation will be accepted by President Rouhani, although the president’s chief-of-staff tweeted to deny reports it had been accepted.