Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi said that the sanctions and restrictions imposed on Iran by the West are part of the costs that Iran is paying to maintain its independence.
Speaking to FNA, Salehi pointed to the enforcement of a set of EU oil bans against Iran on Sunday, and stated, “We have been under sanctions for 33 years (since the victory of the Islamic Revolution 1979), and now some new sanctions have simply been added to old ones; we have no problem with that.”
He called on the Iranian nation to maintain unity, and noted, “My recommendation is that we should show solidarity, national unity, internal solidarity, resistance, persistence and patience against these sanctions because a man should pay the price for protecting his independence.”
Iran, which sits on the world’s second largest reserves of both oil and gas, is facing western sanctions over its civilian nuclear program.
The EU sanctions were ratified in January this year over Iran’s refusal to give up its Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) right of uranium enrichment, but Europeans said they would wait until July 1 to adapt themselves to the new situation, of course if possible at all.
Washington and its Western allies accuse Iran of trying to develop nuclear weapons under the cover of a civilian nuclear program, while they have never presented any corroborative evidence to substantiate their allegations. Iran denies the charges and insists that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only.
Tehran stresses that the country has always pursued a civilian path to provide power to the growing number of Iranian population, whose fossil fuel would eventually run dry.
Despite the rules enshrined in the NPT entitling every member state, including Iran, to the right of uranium enrichment, Tehran is now under four rounds of UN Security Council sanctions for turning down West’s calls to give up its right of uranium enrichment.
Tehran has dismissed the West’s demand as politically tainted and illogical, stressing that sanctions and pressures merely consolidate Iranians’ national resolve to continue the path.