Mousavi calls PGCC remarks on Iran’s decision to reduce JCPOA commitments a ‘historic joke’

Foreign Ministry to PGCC: Statement on Iranian islands is insult to national sovereignty  

December 11, 2019 - 18:57

TEHRAN - The Iranian Foreign Ministry on Wednesday deplored the anti-Iran statement by the Persian Gulf Cooperation Council (PGCC) as baseless and a repetition of old allegations, saying claims of ownership over the Iranian islands in the Persian Gulf is an insult to national sovereignty.

“A few regional countries, which have thus far been providing supports for unwise policies, should respond to the public opinion that what have they done so far except creating and reinvigorating the Takfiri terrorist groups in Iraq, Syria, and Yemen as well as paving the ground for alien countries to enter the Persian Gulf?” Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi asked in reaction to the statement issued by the PGCC in its 40th meeting in Riyadh on Wednesday. 

Mousavi added, “What have they done so far for de-escalation of tensions in the region?”

The Foreign Ministry spokesman indirectly suggested that Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are behind such statements against Iran by the PGGC.

PGCC includes Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman, the UAE and Saudi Arabia.

“Repeating baseless claims in the statement are result of pressures exerted by a few member states of the Persian Gulf Cooperation Council which have used their entire attempts in the last recent decades to prevent the expansion of multilateral cooperation in the region,” Mousavi pointed out. 

The Foreign Ministry official also said certain PGCC countries are responsible for creating mayhem in Syria and Yemen through their rash approaches. 

“They, due to their narrow-minded opinion, not only have been the cause of looting their neighboring countries’ wealth but have paved the way for the alien countries’ interference in this vital and sensitive region.” 

He further said, “A few numbers of the council’s members intend to continue their own unwise policies to ruin the cooperation opportunity created by Iran’s proposed Hormuz Peace Endeavor whose aim is restoring security and stability in the region.”

The spokesman suggested that “other regional countries should not allow them to do so.”

Pointing to policies by senior Iranian officials to bolster regional security over the past long years, Mousavi said, “Offering non-aggression treaty, regional dialogue assembly and ultimately the Hormuz Peace Endeavor are among Iran’s plans to materialize the idea of regional cooperation.”

The Iranian Foreign Ministry official also held Saudi Arabia and its coalition partners responsible for the disaster in Yemen.

The UN says over 24 million Yemenis are in dire need of humanitarian aid, including 10 million suffering from extreme levels of hunger.
“Those countries whose irresponsible meddling in other countries’ internal affair has ended in widespread massacre of innocent civilians, women, children and the old and has also spread insecurity and terrorism in the region, are now trying to externalize their self-made problems to evade any international punishments for their open violation of international law and committing war crimes,” the spokesman added. 

The Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project (ACLED) said in a report published in early November that the Saudi-led war on Yemen has killed more than 100,000 people since 2015. It said the figure included 12,000 civilian deaths indirectly targeted attacks.

The report said 20,000 people had been killed this year, making it the second deadliest year of the war behind 2018.

The non-governmental organization also said April was the most lethal month so far this year, with over 2,500 reported killed, compared to approximately 1,700 in September.

The most violent provinces were Ta'izz, Hudaydah and Jawf, with more than 10,000 people reported killed in each of the regions since 2015.

The war has also taken a heavy toll on the country’s infrastructure, destroying hospitals, schools, and factories. 

The United States and the United Kingdom are the main supporters of Saudi Arabia in the war, providing the kingdom with billions of dollars in arms sales, training, logistical support and targeting assistance for airstrikes.

‘Ay comments on three Iranian islands in the Persian Gulf is an insult to territorial sovereignty’ 

Mousavi also underscored Tehran’s repeated statements that the three islands of Abu Musa,  the Greater and Lesser Tunbs are inseparable parts of Iran, adding, “Any claim on these three islands is considered by Iran as an act of interference in the country’s internal affairs and an insult to our territorial sovereignty.”

He said, “Iran strongly condemns such statements.”

Historic joke

Mousavi termed the PGCC’s reaction to a decision by Tehran to reduce its undertakings under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) as a “historic joke”.

“The countries that applied their entire efforts and wealth against the JCPOA are now opposing Iran’s legitimate measures.”

In early May, Saudi Arabia, a longtime U.S. ally, said it “supports and welcomes” U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal.

“The kingdom supports and welcomes the steps announced by the U.S. president towards withdrawing from the nuclear deal… and reinstating economic sanctions against Iran,” the Saudi foreign ministry said at the time.

Mousavi further condemned the countries that embarked on providing open support for the U.S. economic terrorism against Iran and said the PGCC’s stance in this regard contradicts the good-neighborhood policy.  

On Tuesday, Saudi Arabia's King Salman opened the PGCC summit by calling for regional unity to confront Iran and secure energy supplies and maritime channels.

"Our region today is passing through circumstances and challenges that require concerted efforts to confront them as Iran continues its aggressive actions that threaten security and stability...," he said.

In a televised speech, he also urged the global community to address Iran's nuclear and ballistic missile programs.


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