TEHRAN (Iran News) –A senior parliamentarian says talks between Tehran and Riyadh to reestablish political ties cut in January 2016 has reached a good stage.
“Based on the information we have received, we have reached a very good level at this stage,” Abolfazl Amouei, spokesman for the National Security and Foreign Policy Committee of the Majlis (parliament), told the Mehr News Agency.
So far Iraq has hosted five rounds of talks between Iran and Saudi Arabia. The talks have been at security level. However, recently the Iraqi foreign minister announced that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has suggested that the talks be held at the level of foreign ministers.
Amouei expressed hope that diplomatic talks between the two countries would resume soon.
“This can definitely be a prelude to the revival of political relations,” he underscored.
The legislator stated that the government has followed the path of dialogue to restore relations with Saudi Arabia.
“Although Iran, as an influential country in the region, may criticize the political positions of Saudi Arabia on regional and international issues, this will not negate the existence of a bilateral relationship to pursue issues of mutual interest and exchange opinions on various topics,” he remarked.
The MP added Iran is seriously following negotiations with the Persian Gulf countries. “Building, strengthening and revitalizing bilateral relations is an important issue that takes efforts and time. We should not expect these goals to be achieved immediately, but in all issues, our main focus is on maintaining and securing national interests,” he assessed.
‘Iran seeking to neutralize and lift sanctions simultaneously’
Amouei also said concurrent with the negotiations to remove sanctions on Iran for its nuclear program, the Islamic Republic is following the path of neutralizing sanctions.
The Ebrahim Raisi administration has undertaken effective measures to both remove and neutralize sanctions, he said.
“This administration has taken some steps forward in the field of foreign policy,” the legislator pointed out.
He added, “In accordance with the activities of the National Security Committee, we have received various reports from the foreign ministry and other active and related institutions in foreign policy. One of the signs of strengthening the government in the field of diplomacy is promotion of the status of foreign ministry, which according to some statistics has reached 120 billion dollars,” the MP stated.
According to Amouei, these figures show that the government has taken special care towards economic diplomacy.
“Of course, this is still far from the desired level in terms of economic diplomacy in our country. Nevertheless, the government’s positive steps in this field cannot be denied,” he added.
Strengthening diplomacy is result of diplomatic traffic jam
Stating that one of the significant events in the field of foreign policy is to strengthen Iran’s cooperation in the neighborhood, Amouei said, “In the Central Asian area, in particular, we witnessed a diplomatic traffic jam. The Iranian president and foreign minister have made several trips to the countries of the region and in response, several regional officials have also made trips to our country.”
Emphasizing that good agreements have been reached during these trips, the legislator asserted that some of the agreements have entered the implementation phase, including the gas swap deal between Iran, Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan.
Since the beginning of the Raisi administration good steps have been taken to strengthen cooperation with the outside world, especially with neighbors, Amouei underlined.
“Negotiations with the Persian Gulf (states) are also ongoing. Most of these actions are carried out in order to neutralize the sanctions. We see these steps to create new options and opportunities in the country’s foreign policy,” he added.
The legislator went on to explain about the Vienna negotiations intended to remove the sanctions imposed on Iran, “Nevertheless, the path of lifting sanctions has been followed, although we have not seen an agreement yet.”
The MP then stated that regardless of the effect of sanctions on national economy, sanctions as a whole is a cruel act.
“They cannot boycott a nation from its basic rights. However, we should not wait for the lifting of the sanctions and this policy has been strictly followed in this government,” Amouei opined.
There are good opportunities ahead of Iran, and Tehran should use them wisely, the legislator asserted.
“… different aspects should be seriously considered. Of course, the consolidation of trade from the North-South corridor is a sign of attention to recent events in the region,” the senior MP outlined.
If Iran’s cooperation with Russia leads to the completion of the North-South corridor, it can also strengthen the geopolitical position of Iran, Amouei underscored.
- source : Tehrantimes