Diplomat outlines Iran’s positions in Moscow

October 30, 2021 - 21:2

TEHRAN— Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Political Affairs Ali Baqeri gave various interviews with Russian media outlets during his two-day trip to Moscow. In the interviews, he outlined Iran’s political positions in various issues, including the 2015 nuclear deal (JCPOA), Afghanistan, and sanctions of the United States.

In his interview with RT Arabic published on October 30, Baqeri said that Iran’s defense capabilities are a purely domestic affair related to Iran’s national security, and no other country has any business with it.

Baqeri also told RT that Iran’s negotiations with the 4+1 groups are intended to cancel the illegal U.S. sanctions on Iran.

Baqeri held talks on Wednesday with Enrique Mora, the EU's political director who coordinates talks between Iran and the remaining parties (four permanent members of the UN Security Council - France, Britain, Russia, China plus Germany) and the U.S. that quit the JCPOA in May 2018.

After his talks with Mora, Baqeri tweeted that the nuclear talks for a possible revitalization of the JCPOA will begin before the end of November.

Baqeri also said Iran has good cooperation with the UN nuclear watchdog based on the Safeguards Agreement. 

“We have constructive cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency and are confident that the Agency will not accept its political exploitation,” he remarked. 

Baqeri went on to say that Tehran expects the IAEA to condemn terrorist operations against Iran’s nuclear facilities blamed on Israel.

He added, “Cooperation with neighboring countries is a priority for the Iranian government, and we seek to solve existing problems,” referring to President Raisi’s Asia-oriented foreign policy.
 
Baqeri also said that he had a constructive dialogue with Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov about the JCPOA.

“We agreed that our consultations should be of a periodic nature,” Baqeri said of his talks with Ryabkov. 

Responding to Liz Truss, UK Foreign Secretary’s comments that “if Iran does not engage meaningfully in negotiations, we will reconsider our approach” and that “all options are on the table,” Baqeri said the comments are merely intended to divert the attentions from the Europeans’ responsibilities toward the multilateral nuclear agreement. 

“In my opinion, the positions are a projection in order to divert the minds of the public opinion from the responsibilities of the Europeans within the framework of the agreement between Iran and the P5+1, and to show them a false signal,” he commented.

The diplomat said that the main issue now is that the European side has shown its non-compliance with the agreement in the recent years, especially after the withdrawal of the United States from the JCPOA.

This non-compliance has reached a point that even humanitarian items such as food, medicine and medical equipment were deprived from Iran, the Iranian deputy foreign minister lamented. 

Baqeri said according to international law and regulations, these items are not sanctioned and no authority in the world can sanction them, but “unfortunately they have been sanctioned by Western countries against our people.”

He concluded his remarks on the JCPOA by saying that such positions show that the West has a political will to “divert the public mind from their responsibilities and to give wrong signals to the public opinion.”

“We hope EU will be serious about sending humanitarian aid to Afghanistan”

Also in his interview with the Sputnik, Baqeri said that the European Union representatives have discussed financial aid packages to be sent to Afghanistan’s neighboring countries.

“I told them that we have heard a lot of talk, but we have not seen any serious will, or action in this regard,” the diplomat underlined. 

Baqeri added that in a meeting with the Belgian deputy foreign minister in Brussels on Wednesday, the Belgian side stressed that they intend to provide assistance to Afghanistan's neighbors to help the displaced Afghans. 

“The Austrian foreign minister, who was in Iran two weeks ago, expressed hope that such conditions would be created,” the diplomat added. 

He then expressed hope that these countries will be serious in their claims, “because it is a fact that the people of Afghanistan are now facing very serious problems to meet their basic needs.”

“This aid package has become a humanitarian necessity, both inside Afghanistan and in neighboring countries,” Baqeri underlined. 

SA/PA

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