Foreign Ministry: We are collaborating with Iraq to overcome environmental issues

May 24, 2022 - 20:48

TEHRAN — In a press release issued on Tuesday, Saeed Khatibzadeh, spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, answered to a number of questions raised by correspondents.

At first, he commemorated the anniversary of the epic of liberating the border city of Khorramshahr on May 24, 1982, which had been captured by invading Saddam Hussein’s army in 1980. He also condoled the martyrdom of the glorious martyr Sayyad Khodaei to his fellow martyrs, the Islamic Revolution Guard Corps and the mourning people of Iran. 

In response to a question about the actions of the Foreign Ministry regarding the president's order to resolve the dust storms crisis through diplomacy and international institutes, as well as interaction with neighboring countries, the spokesman said in the last two months, with the occurrence and intensification of the dust storms, the Foreign Ministry has put cooperation with neighbors on the agenda in order to expand regional cooperation and finally implement regional arrangements to deal with the crisis. 

He added, “We have started this cooperation with Iraq and we intend to encourage Syria and other countries in the region to cooperate in these regional arrangements in the next step. In this context, it has been suggested to the Iraqi side to host the Iranian delegation in the form of bilateral cooperation to control sand and dust storms (SDS) hotspots, or to send an Iraqi delegation to our country to pave the way for cooperation between the two countries in the field of environmental issues, including tackling dust and sand storms.”

Khatibzadeh added that regarding the pursuit of the matter through international channels, the Foreign Ministry has been drafting and approving resolutions in recent years in the UN General Assembly, the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and other international institutions.
According to the spokesman, these resolutions have focused specifically on tackling the dust storms matter and the need for regional cooperation to tackle all environmental problems, including the sand and dust storms. 

“Therefore, the international rhetoric on this issue has been formed by consensus with the efforts of the Foreign Ministry in international organizations for several years,” he added, stressing that by creating convergence among the countries of the region, there is hope that in the mid-term, a number of regional arrangements can be achieved to deal with dust and sand storms problems in the framework of cooperation and participation of countries in the region.

Khatibzadeh noted that in the domestic arena, the ministry actively participates in the meetings of the National Headquarters for Sand and Dust Storms Mitigation, which is led by the Department of Environment, and other institutions related to the issue of dust.

Israeli regime’s airstrikes in Syria are blatant violation of international law

In response to a question about the recent Israeli airstrikes on positions in Syria, the spokesman said that unfortunately the indifference of the international community to the repeated aggression of the Israeli regime against the Syrian Arab Republic and the blatant violation of all international laws and regulations have made the leaders of this regime more emboldened and unrestrained. 

“There is no doubt that the overt and covert support of the ruling regime of the United States of America has played an important role in increasing the audacity and insolence of this occupying regime, not only continuing to occupy the Syrian Golan Heights, but also repeatedly attacking the Syrian government and people,” he added.

“According to the news we have received, in the recent attack of the Zionist regime, the parking lot of public vehicles in the town of Zeinabieh and near the holy shrine of Hazrat Zeinab (PBUH) was targeted by a missile, which caused damage to lives and property of the ordinary people,” Khatibzadeh added.

He added that in recent years, during the Syrian crisis, the Zionist regime has usually played the role of the air force of terrorist groups in Syria, and whenever the Syrian army and allied forces defeat these groups, the Zionist regime's planes immediately take action and carry out aggressive attacks.

He stressed that Iran, while condemning these aggressions committed by the Zionist regime, emphasizes the need for an appropriate and decisive response to these aggressions, both in the battlefield and in international organizations.

Sports is being politicized by the Canadians

Elsewhere in the press release, Khatibzadeh responded to the questions posed by reporters regarding the political statements of some Canadian officials regarding the exhibition match between the national teams of Iran and Canada, saying, “The match was coordinated independently by the football federations of the two countries within the framework of the usual football preparation matches, and the Football Federation of Canada has announced that it is determined to host any purely sporting event to prevent any political abuse by well-known anti-Iran groups.” 

Khatibzadeh added that unfortunately, contrary to their claims, the sportiest matters have become a play toy of party orientations and political movements inside Canada. The negative stances and comments of the Prime Minister of Canada and some others indicate the dominance of a purely political and partisan view of all aspects of governance in Canada, and therefore the behavior of the Canadian authorities in public is easily played by opposition groups of Iran. 

He stated that the Canadian Football Federation and the Canadian government are expected to facilitate the holding of this friendly match free from political scams and propaganda as well as propaganda blackmail by FIFA in accordance with the sportsmanship principles and the well-known principles of FIFA. The Football Federation of the Islamic Republic of Iran has assured us that it has made all the necessary agreements with the Canadian Football Federation within this framework and in case of violation of the agreements, the Canadian side will be responsible for all the consequences.

Iran supports Azerbaijan, Armenia resolving differences

In conclusion, the spokesman answered a question about the recent peace overtures between the Republics of Azerbaijan and Armenia, saying, “The Islamic Republic of Iran supports resolving all disputes through upholding the well-known principles of international law, including respect for territorial integrity, sovereignty and the rights of all residents of the region.”

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