Iran

Legislator Raps EU Parliament for Calling Off Visit to Iran

Head of Iran-EU Parliamentary Friendship Group Kazzem Jalali blasted the EU parliament for dropping a visit to Tehran, calling it an “unwise” decision made under the Zionist lobby’s influence.

“The trip was organized upon a demand by the European parliament and we agreed with their demand, but the European parliament gave up the visit with its unwise action which is not at all justifiable and the responsibility for the consequences of this move lies on that parliament (of the EU),” Jalali told FNA on Saturday.

He expressed regret that the European parliament is under the influence of the Zionist regime when making some important decisions, and said since the very first day, the Zionist lobby voiced opposition to the EU delegation’s visit to Iran and made the EU parliament call off the trip, and this shows the EU’s lack of independence.

The trip was cancelled while the European legislators who were due to visit Tehran this week had earlier announced their eagerness to make the trip and study the sanctions imposed by their governments against the Islamic Republic in talks with the Iranian officials.

A senior advisor to the Iranian parliament speaker declared earlier today that the EU delegation has set a precondition for the visit to Tehran, and Iran would not accept their prerequisite.

“The European parliamentary delegation has set a precondition for visiting Iran and will not accept this prerequisite as it runs counter to our policies,” Senior Advisor of the Iranian parliament speaker Hossein Sheikhol-Eslam told FNA on Saturday.

Sheikhol-Eslam did not say if the EU parliamentarians have cancelled the trip to Tehran or not.

Sheikhol-Eslam had announced on Monday that a 15-member delegation of European parliamentarians would arrive in Tehran on October 27 to pay a six-day visit to the country, adding that the visit would take place at the request of the European side.

“Based on a proposal by the European Parliament for a visit to Tehran, they will travel to Tehran (for a visit) from October 27 to November 2,” he said.

Asked if the visit would take place at Iran’s initiative, the senior advisor indicated that the European side had requested the trip.

Although the European Parliament had not declared details of the visit, sources told FNA that the European delegation would be headed by Mrs. Tarja Cronberg, the chairwoman of the European Parliament’s delegation for relations with the Islamic Republic of Iran.

The European parliamentarians were due to have a hectic agenda during the visit to Tehran, including several meetings with senior Iranian political and parliamentary officials.

The visit angered Israel which profoundly worried about the further expansion of ties between Iran and the European countries.

Tel Aviv strove hard to discourage the members of the EU parliament from visiting Tehran.

The Israeli media said that Israel was working to have the visit canceled.

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met Tuesday with European ambassadors to Israel, and praised the latest EU sanctions on Iran while noting that sanctions had not yet prompted Iran to halt its nuclear program.

Israel tried unsuccessfully earlier this summer to discourage nations from participating in a meeting of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) in Tehran, and Netanyahu personally implored UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon not to attend, but was rebuffed.

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