Foreign Policy
Wed Aug 12, 2020 3:23
Rouhani: No Reason for PG Littoral States’ Concern over Iran’s Defense Power
TEHRAN (FNA)- Iranian President Hassan Rouhani warned the Persian Gulf littoral states not to be deceived by the US to stand against a removal of arms embargo on his nation, ensuring them that Iran's military power is only aimed at defending the country and serving peace in the region.

"Our neighboring countries should not let the United States abuse them and ask them to issue a statement," Rouhani said referring to the letter sent by the Persian Gulf Cooperation Council (PGCC) to the UN Security Council whereby the council has been asked to prolong Iran’s arms ban expiring on October 18.

"The letter was not issued at the official meeting of PGCC, and it was written only by the PGCC secretary," he added.

"I advise certain Persian Gulf littoral states that Iran's defense and weapons power is in the interest of the entire region, Rouhani underlined," adding, “We use our weapons to defend our country and confront enemies and foreign aggression."

"Iran's defense power is not a threat to your countries. Those who loot your property and sell you weapons to bomb your neighbors and destroy the Yemeni people are acting against you. We are on your side," he stressed.

'We have been and we will be your brother and supporter,' President Rouhani went on to say.

He emphasized that the US has failed in its anti-Iran policy, and that Iran will pursue its plans in compliance with international laws and national and regional interests.

In relevant remarks on Monday, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Legal and International Affairs Mohsen Baharvand lashed out at certain members of the Persian Gulf Cooperation Council for forging a letter to the UN Security Council on behalf of other PGCC countries on extension of arms embargos against Tehran.

“It is an instance of forging a document and clear scamming. Two people have prepared a letter in New York on behalf of the PGCC countries and sent it to the UN and released it while a number of the PGCC states whose names are seen in the letter are not aware of sending such a letter,” Baharvand told FNA on Monday.

He added that a more interesting issue is that US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo who is aware of the forged nature of the letter and pursues policies to weaken multilateralism and the UN shows himself as an enthusiast and urges the UNSC to respond positively to the regional states’ call for extension of arms embargos against Iran.

Meantime, Iran’s Foreign Ministry Spokesman Seyed Abbas Mousavi on Monday condemned the PGCC’s forged letter, and called it an “irresponsible” statement that serves US interests.

Mousavi also criticized the Persian Gulf Arab countries for being “among the largest arms buyers in the region and the world” even amid the economic downturn caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

He also said that the US attempts to extend arms embargos against Tehran would weaken the UN Security Council and the international mechanisms.

“The arms embargos are rather a threat to the UNSC and its legal mechanism than a threat against the Iranian nation and against us,” Mousavi told reporters in a press conference in Tehran on Monday.

“The Americans want to weaken or annihilate the UNSC by using it instrumentally or take control of it,” he warned.

Mousavi called on the UNSC’s permanent and non-permanent members to keep vigilant in this sensitive period of time, expressing the hope that the independent states’ wisdom and Iran’s consultations with them would create another failure for Washington.

The arms embargo on Iran restricts Iran’s ability to obtain and transfer weapons and expires in October. The expiration is part of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal that the United States walked away from in 2018.

US Ambassador to the United Nations Kelly Craft and the former US envoy for Iran, Brian Hook, briefed the UN Security Council on a proposal to extend the embargo in June.

In relevant remarks last month, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani warned the Group 4+1 (France, Britain, China and Russia plus Germany) that the US-desired extension of arms embargos against Tehran will deal a heavy blow to international laws and multilateralism.

“The G4+1 should know that today Iran’s interests or Iran’s relations with them or Iran’s relations with the regional states are not the only important issues,” Rouhani said, addressing a cabinet meeting in Tehran.

“If the G4+1 does not act precisely today and be influenced by the US, they will deal an essential blow to the international laws and rules and multilateralism, and this will harm everyone,” he added.

President Rouhani, meantime, said that the US has so far been defeated in its political and legal moves, expressing the hope that Washington’s failures would continue as a result of the G4+1 and other countries’ vigilance, and the damages inflicted on the nuclear deal would be repaired by the European states.

Also in July, Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier General Amir Hatami expressed confidence about Washington’s failure in extending the arms embargos against his country.

“The US administration’s demand for extending the arms embargos is an excessive and biased demand and the world states do not accept this demand and will not accompany the US,” General Hatami said.

“In such conditions the US statesmen will not succeed in extending the arms embargos against the Islamic Republic of Iran at the UN Security Council,” he added.

General Hatami, meantime, underlined that the sanctions have left no impact on Iran’s progress in the defensive field.

Meantime, Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Major General Hossein Salami underlined in June that arms embargos would leave no impact on Iran's defense power but rather persuade Iranian experts to produce home-made military equipment and weapons.

"We are under a global arms embargo; arms embargo on one hand and threats by the US and its allies on the other hand. The arms sanctions have created an opportunity for our scientists to build and manufacture defensive needs by reliance on domestic power," General Salami told reporters.

He stressed that extension of the arms embargo against Iran "will not affect our defense power and we will witness the unveiling of surprising systems (by the IRGC) in the near future".

General Salami also said that the IRGC Ground Force does not need imports of any military systems from foreign states.

 

 

 

 

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