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Gov’t Spokesman: Iran Never Accepts to Operate under US Command

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Iran will never accept to join the cooperation formed by the US and its allies against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant terrorist group, but it will certainly continue its aid and assistance to the Iraqi nation and government, Iranian Government Spokesman Mohammad Baqer Nobakht said on Wednesday.
Addressing a press conference after a cabinet meeting here in Tehran on Wednesday, Nobakht reminded Iran’s quick assistance to the Iraqi people when the US had not even taken any position against the ISIL, and stressed, “Definitely, no one will approve that our military forces act under the US command.”

He stated that the American officials have tried hard to appease their Iranian counterparts and encourage them to join the (US-led) anti-ISIL coalition, but to no avail.

“We fulfill our duties vis-à-vis the Iraqi Kurdistan Region and also the Iraqi government which is not understandable for the Americans because it is in line with our national interests,” Nobakht said.

Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei said in an interview with Iran’s state-run TV on Monday and as he left the hospital after a successful prostate surgery that the US disappointment at Iran’s partnership in its incorrect and illegal coalition was an “unrivaled honor” for Tehran.

Ayatollah Khamenei elaborated on some details of the US demands for Iran’s cooperation in forming the anti-ISIL coalition, and said, “During the hard days of Daesh’s attacks on Iraq, the US ambassador to Iraq demanded our envoy in the country (Iraq) that Iran and the US meet for negotiations and coordination on Daesh. Our ambassador reflected the issue to Iran and although some officials didn’t voice opposition, I opposed it and said we will not cooperate with the Americans in this regard since they have a corrupt intention and stained hands and how could we have cooperation with the Americans under such conditions.”

Ayatollah Khamenei said that the US and its allies had earlier formed “a coalition of several countries against Syria, but they couldn’t do a damn thing”, and ensured that the same failure will be repeated with regard to Iraq.

Reiterating that the Americans were not serious about fighting the ISIL, he said, “The Americans and even Daesh are well aware that the move which broke Daesh’s backbone in Iraq was not the US action but the acts of the popular forces and the Iraqi army who had well learned the ways to fight Daesh and inflicted heavy damages on the group.”

Earlier today, Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Marziyeh Afkham deplored the US-led Anti-ISIL coalition as an illegal and hypocritical entity, and criticized the move for disrespecting global mechanisms and UN rules.

“From the perspective of the international law, the legal nature of the (anti-ISIL) coalition is seriously questionable as it has been formed outside the UN mechanisms, specially when considering that the specified goals of this coalition in campaign against terrorism are not in harmony with some of the previous and current actions adopted by the main sponsors of this coalition and a number of its members,” Afkham told reporters in Tehran on Wednesday.

She pointed to the political hypocrisy of some of the so-called advocates of fight against terrorism, and said, “Fighting terrorism is more in need of political will and avoiding double-standards on terrorism than forming massive coalitions and staging media maneuvers, but unfortunately the records of some prominent members of the said coalition show that they have a thicker dossier of using terrorism as a tool and practicing double-standard on its instances.”

Afkham underlined that the Islamic Republic of Iran has always acted responsibly in this regard and on the same basis it lays emphasis on the need for responsible and sincere action of all countries in providing real help to the Iraqi government and nation to help them combat terrorism, and meantime avoid any military and political meddling in the internal affairs of countries on the pretext of fight against terrorism.

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