Iran Opens New Chapter in Relations with Europe

Friday, January 29, 2016

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said upon arrival in the French capital, Paris, that Tehran has opened a new chapter in its relations with Europe.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran is trying to deepen Iran-France relations in line with the interests of the two nations and the states, and this trip is a major step in this regard,” Rouhani said.

The Iranian President said that Tehran and Paris must initiate close and widespread ties to make up for the losses caused by the recently removed “cruel and unjust” sanctions which were imposed on Iran.

Iran’s President has slammed the sanctions policy adopted by certain powers against other countries.

“The policy of sanctions has always been a wrong policy and has never proved to be successful in the course of history,” Rouhani said.

President Rouhani also said the nuclear deal reached last year between Iran and the P5+1 group of countries proved how dialog can pave the way for the progress of nations.

“This agreement told the world… that the negotiating table can be quite influential and effective,” Rouhani said.

Referring to the long history of relations between Tehran and Paris, the president said time is ripe for the two sides to enhance their relations, adding Tehran is prepared to open a new chapter in the ties.

Rouhani noted that Tehran and Paris can cooperate to help solve regional and international problems and take effective measures to promote peace and stability throughout the world.

President Rouhani highlighted that the threat of dangerous terrorist groups who are wreaking havoc across the globe can only be neutralized through closer international and multilateral ties.

The visiting president also offered condolences over the Paris attacks which claimed the lives of 130 people in November, saying, “These terrorist actions show that terrorism is a dangerous pandemic that threatens the whole world, including European cities.”

ٰThe Iranian President also said the issues in the region can be solved through a diplomatic and logical approach. 

Rouhani said the diplomatic process that culminated in last July’s deal on the Iranian nuclear issue should serve as a model in efforts to address other issues of international significance such as the crisis in Syria.

The Iranian president further said it is up to Syrians to decide their political future, calling on other players to avoid interference in the country’s affairs and merely assist the Arab nation to resolve the crisis on its own.

“The main problem in Syria is not such and such person, the main issue is terrorism and Daesh,” said the Iranian president, criticizing the foreign parties that fuel the crisis in Syria by arming the terror groups and being involved in illegal oil trade with them.

The Iranian President has also called on the UN cultural agency to make every effort to protect Middle East cultural heritage from Daesh terrorists operating mainly in Iraq and Syria.

Rouhani expressed regret that the region’s ancient artifacts are being destroyed at the hands of terrorists, who seek to destroy the “identity of religions, cultures and thoughts.”

“All international bodies, UNESCO in particular, must do their utmost for protecting these valuable cultural and human works in the countries like Syria and Iraq,” Rouhani said.

He said that terrorist groups are seeking to cause a break-up between the younger generation and its history before recruiting youths.

The Iranian president hailed efforts by the UNESCO in protecting the world’s cultural heritage, calling on the UN cultural watchdog to exhaust its potentialities in fighting violence and preserving cultural heritage in the two countries.

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