Iran’s nuclear program peaceful, but defense cannot be compromised: diplomat

August 16, 2019

TEHRAN – Iran’s deputy foreign minister for political affairs has said that Tehran’s nuclear program is completely peaceful, but the Islamic republic will not compromise its right to conventional defense.

Abbas Araqchi made the remarks in Tehran on Wednesday in a meeting with an Indonesian parliamentary delegation headed by Abdul Kharis Almasyhari, chairman of the Defense, Intelligence, Foreign Affairs and Information Commission of the People's Representative Council of Indonesia.

Stressing the defensive nature of Iran’s military power, Araqchi warned that any offense against the Islamic Republic will draw a crushing response.

“In its modern history, Iran has not started any war, and will not do so hereafter either. However, it would not have the slightest hesitation in defending itself, and will respond to any aggressor immediately and crushingly,” the Foreign Ministry website quoted him as saying.

Underlining that the United States’ baseless accusations come despite that fact that Iran’s nuclear program is quite peaceful, the top diplomat said, “According to the fatwa (religious edict) of the Supreme Leader, we deem any kind of non-peaceful use of nuclear energy haram (forbidden).”

“We have locally developed this (nuclear) technology within the framework of a peaceful program, with the capabilities of our own scientists,” he stated.

However, Araqchi stressed that reinforcement of Iran’s defense capabilities is for deterrence and not against any third country.

Araqchi also emphasized that the U.S. cruel sanctions against the Iranian nation are illegal and inhumane in nature, saying, however, that Iran is determined to turn them into an opportunity by reforming its economy.

For his part, chairman of the Indonesian parliamentary commission lauded Iran’s self-confidence and independence, stressing the need for the enhancement of parliamentary cooperation between the two countries.

He also voiced Jakarta’s readiness for cooperation with Iran in all areas including fight against extremism and terrorism.

In July, Iranian and Indonesian officials sealed an agreement in Jakarta to further increase mutual cooperation in legal and judicial grounds, migration and extradition of prisoners in particular.

In a meeting between Iran's Ambassador to Jakarta Valiollah Nasrabadi and Indonesian Minister of Law and Human Rights Yasonna Laoly at the end of Nasrabadi's mission, the two sides inked a draft agreement for increasing judicial cooperation.

SP/PA
 

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