Being so subservient to US is a disaster for Europe
Iranian Foreign Minister has warned the Europeans not to be so subservient to the US, calling it a “disaster for Europe”.
Iran Press/Iran news: “It’s a disaster for Europe to be so subservient to the U.S. Anybody who accepts unilateralism is helping it. The Europeans call us and say: We’re sorry, we cannot do anything. The Europeans can’t buckle to Trump and then try to act like the strong man against Iran,” Mohammad Javad Zarif said in an interview with the German weekly Der Spiegel.
Asked about Iran’s reaction to the possible reinstatement of UN sanctions, Iranian Foreign Minister noted: “President Hassan Rouhani clarified the actions we will take in a letter to the treaty partners.”
“The Europeans will be responsible for all the consequences,” he added.
In further remarks on the possibility of talks with the US, Zarif said that if Trump administration can correct its past, lift the sanctions and come back to the negotiating table, then negotiations is possible.
Iran-US differences in reacting to plane crash
In response to the question of why did it take three days for Iran to admit that its own armed forces had shot the plane down, Iran’s top diplomat said: “This was a complicated situation in a complicated time.
“Others needed much more time. Almost 32 years ago, the US shot down an Iranian passenger plane. As of today, they still haven’t issued an official apology. The American officer who was responsible for shooting it down even received a medal. Meanwhile, the Iranian man who shot down the Ukrainian plane is now in prison,” he added.
Tensions increased in the region due to US terrorist action
Stating that Iran has been at the brink of war several times in the past 40 years, Zarif said: “This time, it is particularly grave because the US government undertook a terrorist operation against an official of the Iranian government. That has never happened before.”
The Iranian official added that the US believed that by assassinating Lieutenant General Qassem Soleimani, it would improve its position in the region, but it “will certainly not benefit from this.”
The US will get a response to its terrorist attack from people of the region
“The strike against the military base in Iraq, from which the US conducted its operation, was Iran's formal military response. There was no intention of causing any casualties with the missile attack – we were executing our right to self-defense in a proportionate manner,” he noted.
“But the real response will come from the people of the region, who are showing that they are absolutely disgusted with the US behavior. The Americans will come to realize that General Soleimani as a martyr will be much more effective than if he was alive,” said Zarif.
“Soleimani’s murder is the beginning of the end of the US presence – certainly in Iraq, but elsewhere in the region, too,” Iran’s Foreign Minister stressed.
Iran's resolute response to Pompeo's threatening message
Responding to Der Spiegel's question about Tehran-Washington communication via Switzerland, Zarif said the communication was initiated by the US in a very improper form.
He further explained: “Secretary of State Pompeo is not a very good diplomat. His message was provocative, insulting and threatening to us. I would not read it as de-escalation at all. We sent a very proper response through the Swiss embassy after our counterstrike, without engaging in any sloganeering and chest-thumping.”
“We told them that the action has ended and that we will not take any more action if they don’t take any more action – and that we are not responsible for the actions of others.”
World, indebted to Lt. Gen. Soleimani
“The US, Europe, and the entire international community are indebted to Lieutenant General Soleimani for the victory over ISIS,” said Zarif.
Withdrawal from NPT doesn’t mean making an atomic bomb
Asked about Iran’s threat to withdraw from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) in the case of reinstatement of UN sanctions, he said: “It’s mentioned in the letter to the treaty partners.”
Stating that withdrawal from NPT doesn’t mean making an atomic bomb, the Minister stressed: “Our decision not to build a bomb does not derive from NPT. It derives from our own moral and strategic convictions.”
Once again he reiterated that the Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei has issued a fatwa (a religious legal opinion) prohibiting the production of all weapons of mass destruction.