Iran says three countries have accepted to join Hormuz peace initiative

November 25, 2019 - 16:23

TEHRAN - Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi announced on Monday that three countries have accepted to join Iran’s Hormuz peace initiative.

“Three countries have given written response to Iran’s invitation and other countries are studying it,” Mousavi told a regular press briefing.

He did not name the countries.

At the United Nations summit in New York in late September, Iran officially unveiled a proposal for regional security, officially called the Hormuz Peace Endeavour (HOPE).

“Based upon the historical responsibility of my country in maintaining security, peace, stability and progress in the Persian Gulf region and Strait of Hormuz, I would like to invite all the countries directly affected by the developments in the Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz to the ‘Coalition for Hope’, meaning Hormuz Peace Endeavor,” President Hassan Rouhani told the UN delegates.

Foreign Minister Zarif has invited all regional states to join Iran’s initiative for securing the Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz.

In a tweet in September, Zarif said the initiative entails “dialogue, confidence-building, freedom of navigation, energy security, non-aggression, and non-intervention”.

In a post on his Twitter account on October 15, Zarif renewed Iran’s call to all countries bordering the Persian Gulf to join Tehran’s initiative to “forge a blueprint for peace, security, stability, and prosperity” in the region.

In his press briefing, the Foreign Ministry spokesman called on certain Persian Gulf Arab states to abandon reliance on foreign forces for their security, saying dependence on foreigners is just an “illusion” 

“We called on the countries to respond to Iran’s peace-seeking call and abandon illusions. We have stressed that presence of foreign countries undermines security and stability. We hope this initiative of Iran would face with positive response,” Mousavi stated.

He reiterated Tehran’s long-held position that Iran welcomes reducing tension in the region.

‘Iran reserves right to take essential action in response to Sept. attack on tanker’

Mousavi also said that Iran reserves the right to take essential action about the September 11 attack on its oil tanker in the Red Sea.

“The case is under study. We have announced the missile attack was carried out by certain large destructive equipment… Iran is waiting to see what country was involved in the attack and will take essential actions,” he stated.

Two separate explosions, possibly caused by missile attacks, hit the SABITI oil tanker owned by the National Iranian Tanker Company (NITC). The vessel was struck 60 miles from the Saudi port city of Jeddah.

‘IAEA must act independently’

Mousavi also said that the International Atomic Energy Agency must act neutrally as the United States imposes sanctions on the Fordow nuclear plant.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced on November 18 that the U.S. will no longer waive sanctions related to the Fordow nuclear plant after Tehran resumed uranium enrichment work at the site more than a year after Washington withdrew from the nuclear pact and imposed sanctions on Iran.

Mousavi said, “We do not see the United States’ officials in the position to talk about Iran’s commitments under the JCPOA [the 2015 nuclear deal]. They quit the JCPOA and cannot make comments. However, Iran continues cooperation with the Agency. Various reports of the Agency show depth of cooperation.”

The spokesman also said that South Korean president’s envoy plans to visit Iran. He did not give further details.

‘Constitution upholds people’s right to protest’

Mousavi also said that Iran’s constitution upholds people’s right to protest, however, he noted that riot is separate from protest.

He also said those countries which provoked unrest in Iran “must accept their responsibility”. 

In the peaceful protests in certain cities that followed an increase in gasoline prices some hooligans and individuals allied to groups such as the MKO, PJAK and monarchists resorted to acts of violence and attacked police with arms and knives and put banks and other buildings on fire.  

“Terrorist groups took action during the recent protests and security and judicial bodies are studying the issue,” Mousavi pointed out.

The announcement to increase petrol price was announced at nighttime on November 14. It went into force a day later.

NA/PA


 

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