Rouhani terms Israel ‘the enemy of entire region’

November 27, 2020 - 18:11

TEHRAN — President Hassan Rouhani has voiced concerns over certain regional countries’ normalization of ties with Israel, saying the Zionist regime is the enemy of the entire region and Islamic countries.

“Unfortunately, the presence of the Zionist regime in the region will be a cause of insecurity and instability in the region,” Rouhani said on Wednesday evening during a phone conversation with Qatari Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani.

“It is really a surprise for us that some neighbors consider their security in the shadow of their relations with the criminal Zionist regime, which is the enemy of the entire region and Islamic countries,” he said, according to the president website.

Qatar’s Emir says “Iran must be a party to the talks” on any agreement to provide “regional security”. 

“We, the countries of the region, can solve our problems as neighbors and brothers,” said the president, adding, “I have no doubt that in the coming months we will see better conditions in regional relations with the help of each other.”

Rouhani was referring to the U.S.-brokered normalization agreements between Israel and Iran’s two southern neighbors, the UAE and Bahrain, which are hostile against Iran. 

Since U.S. President Donald Trump assumed office in January 2017, Israel, Saudi Arabia and certain Arab countries have pushed for a harsher U.S. foreign policy against Iran.

They supported Trump’s withdrawal from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal – which was clinched under Barack Obama – and cheered the U.S. president for his subsequent sanctions on Tehran that caused more than two hundred billions of dollars in losses for Iran.

During the Wednesday phone conversation, President Rouhani described the Tehran-Doha relations as friendly, stressing that the Islamic Republic is determined to have dialogue, understanding and brotherly relations with other Persian Gulf countries.

He expressed hope that with the new developments in international relations, the hostile policies of some countries in the region would diminish and “we will see a stronger opportunity for dialogue and intra-regional understanding.”

Highlighting the development and deepening of Tehran-Doha ties in all areas of interest, especially economic and trade relations, the president said, “Accelerating the implementation of agreements between Tehran and Doha will be in the interest of both nations and the region.”

“We hope to see the implementation of all the agreed projects and the flourishing of relations between the two countries,” he remarked.

Rouhani invited to visit Doha

The president also responded to the Emir of Qatar’s official invitation to pay an official visit to Doha, expressing hope that the visit would take place at an appropriate time.

The Qatari Emir, for his part, called the relations between Iran and Qatar strategic and stressed that the implementation of the agreements between the two countries is in the interests of the two nations. Qatar will make every effort to implement these agreements, he said.

Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani further referred to regional issues, noting that his country believes that cooperation between Iran and the Persian Gulf countries “should be further developed in all areas, including water security in the region, and in any agreement to provide regional security, Iran must be a party to the talks to reach an agreement.”

MH/PA

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