Iran’s Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki says Western countries – especially Britain – interfered in Iran’s affairs and share the blame for the post-vote casualties in Iran.
“Britain’s policies towards Iran have been hostile and meddlesome, and of course they were defeated in the face the Iranian nation’s resistance,” Mottaki said during a pre-sermon address to worshippers gathered for the Friday Prayers at Tehran University.
“In these [post-election] events, not all Western countries behaved the same, and it is Britain that has the worst record. It interferes the most in the internal affairs of other countries and it still entertains fantasies of the Great British Empire,” Mottaki elaborated, as reported by ILNA news agency.
In an apparent reference to the BBC, Mottaki alleged that Britain interfered in Iran in the aftermath of the disputed presidential election, “through television channels, which taught ways of creating disturbance, and preparing explosives, and this means that they share the responsibility for the post-election events and killings.”
He said that he had spoken on the telephone with Carl Bildt, the Foreign Minister of Sweden, which is the current holder of the rotating European Union (EU) presidency.
“I said that the EU is going through a transitory period. After following US policies unilaterally, it has now adopted certain anti-Iran policies and it must reconsider these,” Mottaki described his telephone discussion.
He then turned to the recent events in China, and the killings of a large number of Muslims in China’s northwestern province of Xinjiang. His ministry has come under severe criticism from different quarters in Iran, especially by senior clerics, who considered it dichotomous that Tehran complained vociferously about the killing of a Muslim woman by a criminal in a German court, but remained silent in the face of the death of Chinese Muslims.
Mottaki said that, while he did mention the violence in Xinjiang to Chinese officials, he did not want to interfere in China’s “internal affairs or their national unity.”
With regards to Iran’s relations with the US, the Foreign Minister said, “We have been following [US President Barak] Obama’s words since before his election, and we say, if you believe that everyone should participate in international affairs, then why are you not committed to its prerequisite?”
He emphasized that Iran would welcome any changes in words or actions from the White House.
Nevertheless, any negotiations “must have clear objectives. What practical steps from the US have there been?”