Iran Denies Friction with Oman, Turkmenistan
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Iran’s Foreign Ministry dismissed the idea that Oman’s decision to join a Saudi-led military coalition against Yemen may upset the Tehran-Muscat ties, adding that a gas dispute with Turkmenistan is not a political quarrel, either, but only involves technical and financial issues.
Oman’s decision to join the Saudi-led military coalition involved in an aggression on Yemen is not going to change Iran’s relations with the sultanate, Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Qassemi said at a press conference in Tehran on Monday.
Iran has age-old and amicable relations with Oman and in eras of regional ups and downs the two sides’ ties have been constrictive, the spokesman explained, saying Oman will be able to deal with the issue in such a way that Tehran-Muscat relations remain intact.
Elsewhere in his remarks, Qassemi touched on the recent gas dispute with neighboring Turkmenistan, saying the row is about “technical and financial”, not political, issues.
“We will have no serious problems,” he said about Turkmenistan’s decision to halt gas exports to Iran, expressing the hope that the two sides would reach an agreement, given their rights.
While Iran and Turkmenistan had been holding talks on the payment and amount of Iran’s debts, Ashgabat cut off gas supplies to Iran suddenly on Sunday.
Iranian officials, however, say the country has no problem is feeding gas to the national grid, even in the northern parts of the country.
Turkmenistan occasionally raises gas prices in the wintertime. In 2006, during days of freezing temperatures and blizzard in Iran, the Central Asian country cut off gas shipments and demanded a nine-fold price increase. Iran eventually accepted the higher prices for a short period.