Iran welcomes Qatari call for regional dialogue

January 20, 2021 - 21:20

TEHRAN – Iran has welcomed the Qatari foreign minister’s call for a dialogue between Iran and the Persian Gulf’s Arab states.

“Iran welcomes my brother FM @MBA_AlThani's call for inclusive dialogue in our region. As we have consistently emphasized, the solution to our challenges lies in collaboration to jointly form a 'strong region': peaceful, stable, prosperous & free from global or regional hegemony,” Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said in a tweet on Tuesday night.

The tweet came after Qatari Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani called for dialogue between Iran and its Arab neighbors to resolve outstanding differences. The chief Qatari diplomat once again expressed hope that a summit between leaders of the six-member Persian Gulf Cooperation Council and Iran would happen.

“We are hopeful that this [summit] would happen and we still believe that this should happen. And I think this is also a desire that being shared among the other GCC countries. I just mentioned to you that there is a difference between the countries on the way how to approach such a dialogue. Also from the Iranian side. They have expressed their willingness several times to engage with the GCC countries,” he said in an interview with Bloomberg TV.

Bin Abdulrahman underlined that the time should come when the Persian Gulf’s Arab states will sit at the table with Iran and reach a common understanding. “We have to live with each other. We cannot change geography. Iran cannot move the GCC away from its neighborhood and the GCC cannot move Iran from the neighborhood,” he continued.

The Qatari foreign minister voiced readiness to facilitate dialogue between Iran and the GCC or support anyone facilitating such a dialogue.

He also expressed hope that the much-anticipated talks between Iran and the U.S. on the 2015 nuclear deal –officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA)- would help soothe tensions between Iran and its Arab neighbors.

Bin Abdulrahman expressed hope that what will happen between Iran and the U.S. on the JCPOA would contribute to resolving the differences between Iran and the GCC. “Of course, things are interconnected at the end of the day,” he noted, adding that Qatar will support negotiations between the stakeholders.

“We will be welcoming this idea. We maintain a good relationship with the U.S. and we maintain a good relationship with Iran,” bin Abdulrahman stated.

SM/PA

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