|Iran advocates peaceful resolution to Syria crisis, Iranian FM says||
MUSCAT - Iran has opposed the idea of using military means to solve the Syrian imbroglio, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said, while noting that his country would support only peaceful efforts to restore normalcy in Syria.
Addressing a press conference in Muscat on Monday, Zarif said that Iran would support all peaceful attempts to bring peace to that country. "If invited to participate in Geneva-II, Iran would certainly accept the invitation," said Zarif.
Responding to a question about the future of Syria and Iran's stand on the issue, Zarif said that his country believed that the will of the Syrian people must be respected in any future solution. "Only people of Syria can determine the future of their country and, that too, through ballot," said the foreign minister.
He noted that Iran valued the significant role played by Oman and His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said in strengthening world peace as it enjoys the trust of various countries of the world.
Zarif said that his talks with His Majesty the Sultan and officials of the Sultanate were very productive. "Oman has an important position in the region and enjoys great respect in the international arena. We are continuing our efforts to strengthen the relations between the two sides," he said.
On relations between Tehran and Riyadh, Zarif said that Saudi Arabia is one of the dominant powers in the Islamic world.
Iran follows the policy of boosting its relations with all its neighboring countries, including Saudi Arabia and there is no hurdle in the way, he said. He added he would be visiting Saudi Arabia soon.
On the nuclear deal, Zarif said that Iran would continue five percent enrichment of its uranium as agreed at the Geneva summit. "We cannot negotiate on our nuclear program which is solely for peaceful purposes. Iran does not want to deceive the world. We are working under an international supervision. Whatever has happened in Geneva, was nothing but achievement of this objective. We wanted to develop trust between us and others," he asserted.
"We consider the production of nuclear weapons illegal, immoral and an inhuman act. In addition to this, we believe that nuclear weapons will affect the peace of our nation. We do not want to enter into any nuclear weapons race which is suicidal," he said.
He pointed out that His Majesty's visit to Tehran and his meeting with Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and President Dr. Hassan Rowhani opened new avenues for the Sultanate to play a constructive role in solving regional and international issues.
He explained that the role of the Sultanate at the regional level is "accorded with great interest" and that the world community holds officials of the Sultanate in great esteem.
As for the nuclear issue and relations between Iran and countries of the region, Zarif said: "We feel the relations among countries of the region should be built on mutual trust."
He noted, "The Iranian people do not trust the West; therefore, they have to build bridges with Iran."
He pointed out that the details of the Joint Plan of Action signed between Iran and the P5+1 countries were provided to the world.
He added, "The pact is also drafted in a very clear language. Iran will continue enrichment of uranium at 5 percent during the next six months."
As for the role of Israel in the region, Zarif said, "Israel secures its interests when there are some tensions; through threat, terrorism, practicing unjust policies and by suppressing people. It wants others to follow its approach and policies. Some countries are making efforts to distract attention from what is going on in the region by continuing their threats about the Iranian nuclear program."
He further said, "On the contrary, the Zionist entity has nuclear activities, owns chemical weapons, continues building settlements and violates the rights of the Palestinians and the people of the region. These parties, through lies, seek to divert attention towards Iran."
(Source: Times of Oman)
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