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Zarif: Iran stands by Cuban nation, govt.

22 August 2016 7:41

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Foreign Minister Zarif said Iran completely understands the pressures exerted on Cuba by US and thus, will maintain its good relations with Cuban nation and government.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif made the remark among reporters before arriving in Cuban capital Havana early Monday, adding “the Cuban people have endured America’s outrageous pressures and sanctions for more than five decades, and despite Obama’s visit to Havana, the sanctions, although slightly lessened, are still in place.”

Zarif went on to add, “since opposing Arrogance is a significant feature of our Islamic Revolution and Iran has been sanctioned by the US for over three decades, we understand Cuba’s situation and will stand by its nation and government.”

Zarif then referred to the accompanying 120-person delegation which includes 20 managers from the private sector and 20 others from state economic sector, saying “the composition of the delegation indicates the significance that both the private and state sectors attach to the expansion of ties with Latin American countries.”

The Iranian top diplomat deemed Tehran and Havana’s cooperation in the fields of biotechnology and other scientific and pharmaceutical areas satisfactory, expressing Iran’s interest in expanding the private sector’s cooperation with Cuba in various technical and engineering fields.

“Politically, we have maintained good coordination with Cuba for holding NAM summit in Venezuela next month,” he added.

Iran will transfer the presidency of the Non-Aligned Movement organization to Venezuela during NAM’s upcoming summit on Margarita Island in September.

Following his meetings with Cuban senior officials and attending a joint economic conference, Zarif will depart for Nicaragua, a Central American nation. He will then visit Ecuador, Chile, Bolivia and Venezuela in South America to confer with respective officials on expanding political and economic relations.

This is the first time Foreign Minister Zarif is making a tour to Latin America. Rouhani’s administration had planned Zarif’s Latin American tour for three times, but each time the visits were postponed due to developments either in the Middle East or Latin American countries.

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