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EghtesadOnline: Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qasemi said Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif believes the prestigious Chatham House Prize 2016 indeed belonged to the resistant nation of Iran.

He confirmed news that Zarif has been named as the winner of the prize by the prestigious London-based international institution, but said he would not be able to appear in the award-giving ceremonies due to his busy schedule, according to IRNA. 

He said Zarif won the prize because of his contributions to promotion of universal peace.

Qasemi further stressed that the foreign minister thinks the prize is in fact the outcome of the resistance of the heroic nation of Iran who managed to overcome pressures and sanctions over the past few years with exercising wisdom.

Javad Zarif and US Secretary of State John Kerry have been voted as the winners of this year’s Chatham House Prize, the institute announced in its official website on Monday.

The Chatham House Prize is presented annually to the person, persons or organization deemed by members of the Royal Institute of International Affairs to have made the most significant contribution to the improvement of international relations in the previous year.

Chatham said that this year, members voted for John Kerry and Mohammad Javad Zarif in recognition of their crucial roles, throughout 2015, in successfully negotiating the historic nuclear deal between Iran and the P5+1 – considered to be one of the most intractable diplomatic stand-offs in international affairs in the 21st century.

The deal was one that many thought impossible. Overcoming enormous technical complexity, entrenched domestic opposition in the United States and Iran and three decades of intense hostility between their two countries, Kerry and Zarif’s leadership and commitment, in particular, were imperative to sustaining and driving the negotiations to their successful conclusion.

With the vital participation of officials from other permanent members of the UN Security Council, Germany and the EU, they secured a deal, endorsed by the UN Security Council and more than 90 countries, which was a victory for diplomacy as well as against nuclear proliferation, Chatham said in a statement.

Mohammad Javad Zarif Bahram Qasemi Chatham House Prize