Iranian president reprimands NATO expansionist policies

May 9, 2022 - 21:38

TEHRAN - Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi has stated his country's categorical opposition to the U.S.-led North Atlantic Treaty Organization’s expansionist policies in Europe.

Raisi made the statements during a meeting with visiting Polish Foreign Minister Zbigniew Rau on Sunday, during which the two sides discussed ways to strengthen bilateral ties.

“Just in the same way that the Islamic Republic of Iran is opposed to conflict and war, it is also firmly opposed to NATO expansionist policies,” the president noted, referring to the ongoing war between Ukraine and Russia.

On February 24, Russian President Vladimir Putin proclaimed the start of a "special military operation" in Ukraine. The crisis has elicited a united response from Western nations, who have levied a slew of penalties on Moscow.

Russia states it would end the operation immediately if Kiev complies with Moscow's conditions, which include never asking to join NATO.

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian, speaking at a joint news conference with his Polish counterpart earlier in the day, said the Islamic Republic is opposed to violence everywhere in the globe, emphasizing Tehran’s policy that dialogue is the only way out of the Ukraine problem.

“We oppose war in Ukraine as we do in Yemen, Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq or any other place in the world," the top Iranian diplomat pointed out.

Raisi also criticized the low level of trade and economic cooperation between Iran and Poland, stating that the two countries have great potential, notably in the industrial and economic spheres, which must be tapped via collaborative efforts to improve bilateral relations.

“There are various capacities, including in the industrial and economic fields in the two countries, which we must realize through joint efforts in order to expand mutual interests,” President Raisi stated. 

“The rich historical background and civilization of Iran and Poland can be a good platform for strengthening scientific and cultural interactions between the two countries,” said the Iranian president, referring to the Poles' appreciation of the Iranians' support for the country's refugees during WWII.

For his part, the Polish foreign minister underlined that the ties between Tehran and Warsaw extend back to the 16th century and that the two countries have been friends for over five centuries. 

He also praised Iran's kindness in welcoming Polish refugees during World War II. 

Rau underscored that his country wants to expand collaboration with Iran in sectors including commerce, economy, culture, and science. 

On Saturday night, the Polish foreign minister visited Tehran at the head of a delegation to meet with Iranian authorities.