Iranian People Distrust West: Iran’s FM
THERAN (Tasnim) – Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said the Iranian people distrust the West and believe the western countries are seeking to deny them access to technology.
Zarif made the remark on Sunday while addressing the Iran Panel at the Munich Security Conference, adding that the imposition of sanctions against Iran was unhelpful in trust-building between Tehran and the West.
“Stepping up the sanctions has only led to a rise in the number of (Iran’s) centrifuges,” he stated.
The panel was attended by Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency Yukiya Amano, Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt, US Senator Christopher Murphy and Chairman of the Munich Security Conference Wolfgang Ischinger.
Zarif referred to the talks between Iran and the world’s powers on Tehran’s nuclear program and said the current “historic opportunity” should be used to reach a viable agreement based on a “balanced” solution.
Iran and the Group 5+1 (the five permanent UN Security Council members plus Germany) on November 24, 2013, signed a six-month deal on Tehran’s nuclear program in Geneva after several rounds of tight negotiations.
Based on the interim deal (the Joint Plan of Action), the world powers agreed to suspend some non-essential sanctions and to impose no new nuclear-related bans in return for Tehran's decision to suspend its 20% enrichment for a period of six months.
Iran’s FM further pointed to the failure of earlier negotiations between Iran and the West in 2003-2005, and said Washington entered the talks with “the illusion of zero-percent enrichment” and that was one of the reasons for the failure of the negotiations.
Elsewhere in his remarks, Zarif said Iran has started a process of dialogue with the neighboring countries including Turkey, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates.
Delegates from all over the world are attending the 50th Munich Security Conference. Taking place for half a century, what originated as an international protection meeting in 1963, has turned into a renowned security conference. Previously the focus of the conference was on maintaining transatlantic relations, however, the conference now addresses global security problems.