Speaking at a weekly press conference on Monday, Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Abbas Mousavi censured the idea of a US-led maritime coalition in the Persian Gulf, saying “we consider the presence and the role of foreign forces in our region as a cause for instability.”
“We have told our neighbors that security cannot be imported; rather, it must be obtained through collective cooperation among all concerned countries,” he added.
“All countries must have a part in providing security in the region, and Iran’s peace initiative, named Hormuz Peace Endeavor (HOPE), seeks to realize this goal and promote security in the region,” Mousavi said, adding “we have announced that all countries can partake in the initiative and President Rouhani’s letter regarding the issue has been forwarded to all, namely the six Persian Gulf littoral states as well as Iraq.”
“We hope that they will cast aside their illusions and respond positively to our call for peace,” Mousavi stressed.
“Some countries have welcomed the initiative, while some are still reviewing it and three others have already responded positively,” the spokesman added.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani presented the Hormuz Peace Endeavor (HOPE) initiative while delivering a speech at the recent UN General Assembly meeting and invited all regional countries to participate in it.
According to Foreign Minister Zarif, “The initiative is based on the fact that all regional countries are duty-bound to ensure peace, stability and prosperity in the region. Together with the international community, they have common interests in maintaining freedom of navigation and energy transfer.”
Iran’s initiative comes as the US has been trying to persuade its allies into a maritime coalition purportedly seeking to boost security in the Persian Gulf.