Dec 29, 2018, 3:32 PM
News Code: 83151342
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US presence, source of tension in region: Iran FM

Beijing, Dec 29, IRNA – Iran's Foreign Minister Mohammad-Javad Zarif stated that Tehran has always believed that the US presence in the Persian Gulf which is illegal will create tension in the region.

According to the Chinese media, he made the remarks in an interview with the Phoenix TV during which he stressed that 'the presence of the US warships in the Persian Gulf produced extensive tension rather than being constructive.'

He said that whenever the US increased its presence in the Middle East, all the countries of the region somehow faced threats and danger.

Noting that Iran is a strong country, Zarif added that it was unlikely for the US to have the necessary conditions to threaten Iran.

He said that the US policies in the region had to be changed because they were 'dangerous'.

Elaborating on Tehran-Washington relations, the foreign minister said that despite numerous unwise decisions by the US administration so far, it is 'highly improbable' that they intend to make the situation worse than what it already is.

Answering a question about Chinese analysts' prediction that in six months, Iran will have to negotiate with the US, he said, 'I believe the Chinese analysts will change their idea after six months.'

He added that Iran will never negotiate with the US as if it is in a state of emergency.

Zarif said people should note that it was Washington that quit the internationally-signed and UN-confirmed Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) so the US is the country which has to come back to the negotiation table.

Regarding the new round of the US sanctions on Iran, the Iranian foreign minister said, 'The US cannot stop Iran from exporting its oil. Trying to do so, the US has to adopt policies that will disrupt the world.'

The Iranian foreign minister also commented on Canada's detention of one of the senior managers of the China's telecommunication giant Huawei , 'The move will affect the world more than Iran because Canada has arrested a person who is guilty of no illegal action.'

'I was surprised that Canada, an independent country, voluntarily became a puppet of the US and detained such an influential and honorable person upon Washington's order.'

Answering a question about the Special-Purpose Vehicle (SPV), to be proposed by Europe, Zarif said that contrary to China, Russia and the neighboring countries, with which Iran has created special payment mechanisms, Europe is not the most important commercial partner of Iran.

He added, 'We are not after cutting ties with Europe; but still believe that if Europe fails to go on with its suggested SPV, it shows that it cannot be a trustworthy partner for the world.'

About the power and leverage of China, he said that China's becoming the second contributor to the United Nations budget shows that the country has a pivotal role in the world.

'China's role is positive and constructive, especially for Iran. China and Iran enjoy policies which are close to each other.'

Zarif also said that the people and the government of China know that Tehran is a trustworthy partner and Iran will never tie China's need for Iran's energy with political issues.


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