Requisites of the New Phase of Relations between Iran and the European Union

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Seyed Mohammad Ali Hosseini
Media Advisor to Foreign Minister of the Islamic Republic of Iran

Relations between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the European Union (EU) have seen many ups and downs during the past four decades. Unrealistic and partial policies adopted by the European Union in support of the former Iraqi dictator, Saddam Hussein, during the war that he imposed on Iran; multifaceted support offered by the EU for the terrorist Mojahedeen Khalq Organization (MKO), which has the assassination of 17,000 people on its thick and black records; the unsuitable and illogical approach adopted by the EU to the so-called critical dialogue with Iran; unfair positions taken and illegal decisions made by this union with regard to Iran's peaceful nuclear activities and its support for unjust sanctions imposed on the Islamic Republic of Iran are only a few examples of measures taken by the European Union against Iran. Such measures were sometimes taken out of frustration and inattention to the realities on the ground, while at other times they were adopted under pressure and influence of third parties, which caused Iran's relations with the EU not to follow a rational, and growing and evolutionary trend.

Now, however, due to the positive international atmosphere created after the conclusion of Iran's nuclear deal with world power, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), European countries have been offered with an opportunity to learn a lesson from the past unpleasant trend and, through effective and constructive cooperation of the Iranian side, lay foundations of a new strategy based on balance, cooperation, common interests, and mutual respect.

Frequent visits to Iran by high-ranking political and economic delegations from various countries of the Green Continent to Iran and most importantly, a recent visit to Tehran by the EU’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini at the head of a high-ranking political delegation, which was the first of its kind, have raised this hope in the mind of many analyst of foreign political issues.

Since taking her new post, Ms. Mogherini has adopted a constructive and interactive approach to building confidence with Iran. She has demonstrated through her positions and remarks as well as through her interaction and role in Iran's nuclear negotiations that she has a better understanding of the Islamic Republic of Iran's realities and capabilities and has a better grasp of our country’s determining and constructive role in regional and international developments. This issue can be of great help in opening a new chapter in strategic relations between Iran and the European Union.

Last Friday, she published an article in the German newspaper, Handelsblatt, announcing that the EU states are bent on launching a new phase of their relations with Iran. In the same article, she mentioned important points and enumerated suitable grounds for the realization of the new round of cooperation between the two sides. The most important part of her article was where she said the two sides need time, courage and determination in order to help the new phase of their relations grow.

I am willing to mention a few points in this regard.

Firstly, both through the nuclear talks and also before and after achievement of JCPOA, the Islamic Republic of Iran has shown that it cares for opportunities and the time needed to take advantage of them, and is also endowed with necessary courage and firmness to make its positions known, avoid dishonesty and violation of its promises, and fulfill its obligations with honesty.

Therefore, Iran reciprocally expects all European sides, as well as governments, institutions and banks affiliated to them, to take seriously the recommendation made by Ms. Mogherini in this article, where she says the two sides need time, courage and resolve in order to help the new phase of their relations grow. They must take this seriously because only by observing these three principles and through honest and all-out fulfillment of the two sides’ obligations the way would be paved for taking advantage of countless and potential capacities that exist right now. Otherwise, the time will go on and continuation of the incorrect approach of the past would bring nothing but damage and loss.

Secondly, another important factor, which calls for good knowledge of time, vigilance, courage and firmness on the part of the European countries is to strip third parties, both in the region and beyond, of any opportunity to interfere in this process. During past years and months, such parties have shown that their continuous and incessant efforts are aimed at obstructing the beginning of the new era of relations between Iran and Europe.

Thirdly, the United States, as the most important third party, has played a unique role in causing stagnation in and undermining the trend of relations between Iran and the European Union during the past four decades and has challenged political independence of this union and its member states. Therefore, adoption of more independent policies by European countries, enforcing those policies, and also preventing any interference from Washington will play a vital role in making possible the new phase of relations between Iran and the European Union.

Key WordsIran, European Union, New Phase, Relations, Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), Opportunity, Constructive Cooperation, Balance, Common Interests, Mutual Respect, Federica Mogherini, Time, Courage, Determination, Interference, Washington, Hosseini

Source: Fars News Agency
Translated By: Iran Review.Org

More By Seyed Mohammad Ali Hosseini:

*Quality of Economic Sanctions against the Islamic Republic of Iran: A Review:

*ISIS and the Threadbare Scenario of “War on Terror”:

*Iran and EU Improving Ties to Boost Mutual Cooperation:

*Photo Credit: Mehr News