Rouhani, Abe planning to meet in September

Zarif, Abe meet in Yokohama

August 28, 2019

TEHRAN – Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe met in Yokohama, near Tokyo, on Wednesday.

According to Reuters, Zarif said that Iran is not seeking to increase tension but every country should be able to enjoy its rights under international law.

“As our president has said, we are not at all seeking heightened tensions,” Zarif said, speaking through a translator.

He said, “We believe every country should be able to enjoy its rights under international law.”

According to The Mainichi, Zarif said, “Iran welcomes the Japanese government’s role (in trying) to ease tensions in the Middle East.”

Abe said, “Japan will persistently continue our diplomatic efforts to deal with rising tensions in the Middle East and stabilize the current situation.”

Pointing to his meeting with Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei, Abe said that Ayatollah Khamenei noted that Iran does not seek nuclear weapons, according to ISNA.

According to The Japan Times, Abe and President Hassan Rouhani are planning to meet in late September at the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

Abe was in Iran on a two-day visit on June 12.

During a meeting with Abe on June 13, Ayatollah Khamenei dismissed U.S. President Donald Trump as a person not worthy of exchanging messages. 

The Leader said Iran has “no trust” in the U.S. and will not at all “repeat the bitter experience” it gained from the negotiations that led to the conclusion of a 2015 nuclear deal, which Washington later ditched.

During a joint press conference with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on June 12, Abe said he will use his country’s “utmost effort” to deescalate tension in the Persian Gulf and the wider Middle East region.

“Japan will use its utmost effort to reduce tension in the region,” he said.

Abe said, “Increase in tensions in the region must be contained at any price, and Japan can play a quite constructive role in this regard.”

“Peace and stability of the Middle East region is essential not only for the prosperity of this region, but also for the prosperity of the entire world,” Abe noted.

Iran and the U.S. have been at odds since last year when Trump withdrew from a 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and major powers and reimposed sanctions on Tehran.

Tensions entered a new stage since April when the U.S. designated the IRGC (part of the Iranian military) as a terrorist organization, announced that it does no renew waivers for the eight major buyers of the Iranian oil, and started beefing up its military presence in the region, particularly in the Persian Gulf.

The IRGC shot down an unmanned U.S. surveillance drone on June 20 after it breached Iran’s airspace. 

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said that the U.S. military drone entered the Iranian airspace from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and it was targeted near Kouh-e Mobarak.

NA

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