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Zarif: Too early to analyze US exit from Syria


Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Monday that it is too early to render a detailed analysis of US withdrawal from Syria.

In an exclusive interview with Al-Mayadeen late on Monday, he added that US presence in Syria was illegal and illegitimate from the beginning, as it was not approved by the Syrian government.

“They created tensions in the country and contrary to their claim they in no way fought with Daesh,” he said.

Expressing regret over EU’s interaction on implementing JCPOA, Zarif said that Europeans are to slow in fulfilling their commitments under the JCPOA and “We will not keep waiting until they take practical steps.”

EU claims that nuclear deal is significant for them, as they intend to benefit from it, but ‘it is impossible to swim without getting wet,’ Zarif said.

“We have many options available and not using the options following US exit from JCPOA does not mean that we have lost them; rather when national interests require, we will adopt the options and we will never sit waiting for the Europeans unless they take practical steps,” he said.

Commenting on Turkey’s decision to launch operations in Syria, he said that Ankara should coordinate the military operations with Damascus government.

Earlier, Turkey announced that it will start new operation against the YPG and PKK in eastern Euphrates.

“We have always said that such operations should be undertaken by the Damascus government. We understand Turkey’s concerns over terrorist acts, but military operations without Damascus approval cannot contribute to solving crisis,” Zarif said.

“We are ready to help them to address their concerns through coordination with the Syrian government,” he said in address to the Turkish officials.

Contending that buying billions worth of US weapons will not bring security for a country, Iranian foreign minister said that some think that doing so will provide them with security, as they are racing for purchasing weapons from Washington.

“We believe that all countries should attach significance to neighbors’ security as much as they give to their own,” he said, noting that no country should be enemy of the other.

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