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TEHRAN, January 24. /TASS/. Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has described as counter-productive a likely decision to impose more sanctions on Iran or Russia.
“Introduction of sanctions against Iran or against Russia would be counter-productive,” the news agency Fars quotes Zarif as saying at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, on Friday.
Zarif warned that should the United States take more sanctions against Iran, no agreements on Tehran’s nuclear program would be signed and that retaliatory steps by the Iranian parliament would follow.
“Regrettably, there are certain forces that do not wish to see the conclusion of an agreement on the Iranian nuclear program. They enjoy great influence in the world and in the US Congress and exert pressures on US legislators. These forces cause adverse effects on the process of negotiations and steer the talks away from the end goal,” Zarif said. He warned that “if some, be it the US Congress or whoever, try to torpedo the negotiations, they will find themselves isolated from the international community.”
Zarif declared that if the US Congress adopted sanctions against Iran, his country’s parliament would retaliate.
“The US president has the power to veto (a resolution on sanctions), while our constitution does not allow the president to block the parliament’s decisions,” Zarif explained.
In the course of the talks we demonstrated our intention to conclude an agreement and we will be prepared to move on in the same direction. I hope that we will not permit a confrontation, because a standoff would benefit nobody,” the news agency Tasnim quotes Zarif as saying.
He pointed out that the partners’ respect for each other was a crucial element of any negotiating process.
“I do not think that confrontation will be possible, that we will fail to understand each other, and that the partners will waste the potential built up over the past ten years. Moreover, Iran has 19,800 centrifuges for uranium enrichment at its disposal, which demonstrates that the sanctions have not brought about the expected effect. The sanctions have not suppressed the Iranian economy. That game has yielded no benefits.”
The Iranian foreign minister recalled that the interim agreement with the sextet of international negotiators (five permanent members of the UN Security Council and Germany) on the nuclear program, concluded in November 2013 enabled his country to achieve two goals. Firstly, the agreement reaffirmed Iran’s right to the civilian use of nuclear power, “which is an inalienable right of the Iranian people.” Secondly, it was a confirmation that the program was exclusively peaceful.
Zarif recalled that Iran’s nuclear doctrine was peaceful and left no room for the creation or possession of nuclear weapons.
“We do not believe that the risk of mutual annihilation is a good recipe. Iran is not a nuclear power, and it will remain so. Nor do we have the equipment to create this lethal weapon,” he said.
The Iranian foreign minister is certain that at the negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program the parties have chances of achieving a solution of the problem, the news agency Tasnim said. He also called upon the international community to come out against the process that undermines “exceptionally important achievements.”
According to local media the Iranian foreign minister and US Secretary of State John Kerry held consultations over Tehran’s nuclear program.