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Rouhani: Europe must not allow US bans to affect ties with Iran

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has hailed the European Union for backing the landmark 2015 nuclear agreement in the face of the US’s unilateral withdrawal, saying Europe should not allow American sanctions to influence its trade dealings with Tehran.

Rouhani made the remarks on Tuesday in separate meetings with several new foreign ambassadors to Tehran, including envoys from Denmark, Norway, Germany, Spain, Portugal and the Czech Republic, who submitted their credentials to the Iranian president.

In a meeting with Portuguese new Ambassador in Tehran Carlos Antonio Rico Da Costa Nos, Rouhani praised the European Union, including Portugal, for its support for the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, officially called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), and the bloc’s opposition to the US unilateralism.

The Iranian president further hailed deep-rooted relations between Tehran and Lisbon, expressing hope for the promotion of mutual ties in all fields, particularly in economic and trade sectors.

“Portugal, along with other European countries, has consistently supported international regulations, multilateral agreements, particularly the JCPOA, and has opposed unilateralism and unilateral measures,” said Rouhani.

The Portuguese envoy, for his part, voiced his country’s willingness to develop relations with Tehran, saying he would spare no effort in promoting mutual ties, especially in economic areas.

In another meeting with Danish Ambassador Jesper Vahr, Rouhani praised the inauguration of a joint Tehran-Copenhagen medical and pharmaceutical center amid the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, calling for the development of bilateral cooperation.

In a separate meeting with Norway’s new Ambassador Sigvald Tomin Hauge, Rouhani highlighted ample opportunities for economic and scientific cooperation between Tehran and Oslo.

The Iranian president said Norway’s membership in the UN Security Council provides a good opportunity to strengthen global cooperation for peace and stability in the world.

The Norwegian official, in turn, expressed his country’s firm support for the JCPOA, saying the Scandinavian country has always tried to be a reliable partner in the area of multilateralism in the world.

Hans Odo Motzel, Germany’s new ambassador to Tehran, also met with Rouhani, who called for closer economic interaction between Tehran and Berlin regardless of America’s unlawful anti-Iran restrictions.

Praising Germany’s stance against the American unilateralism, the Iranian chief executive said the three European parties to the JCPOA have acted “logically in dealing with the US’s illegal and incorrect measures and attempts to re-impose cruel sanctions against the Iranian nation.”

The German envoy reiterated Berlin’s commitment to the multilateral nuclear deal, calling for deeper mutual cooperation between Iran and Germany.

Following its withdrawal from the JCPOA in 2018, Washington warned its European allies against any attempt to evade its anti-Iran sanctions, threatening those refusing to abide by the bans with “terrible consequences.”

The Europeans, however, said they were intent on trying to salvage the deal and find ways to compensate for Washington’s absence in an effort to keep Tehran in the deal.

Iran has said the JCPOA without the US should meet its economic interests or it will leave the nuclear deal.

Rouhani stresses Ayatollah Sistani’s ‘unmatched’ role in Iraq’s stability

In a meeting with Iraq’s new Ambassador in Tehran Nasir Abdul Mohsen Abdullah, Rouhani highlighted the “unparalleled” role of Iraq’s top Shia cleric Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani in maintaining stability and security in the Arab country.

President Rouhani said that Ayatollah Sistani has always been respected by the Iranian people and government.

He further highlighted the significance of the amicable, neighborly and brotherly ties between Iran and Iraq and said the Islamic Republic “is resolved to [continue] supporting peace, stability and security of Iraq.”

The new Iraqi ambassador, for his part, stressed the need for further expansion of Tehran-Baghdad relations, adding that the Iraqi government and people do not forget the assistance and efforts of Iran in their fight against Daesh terrorists.

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