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EghtesadOnline: Kamal Kharrazi, the head of Iran's Strategic Council on Foreign Relations and a foreign policy adviser to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, told FRANCE 24 that Iran was open to “dialogue” with Saudi Arabia despite escalating tensions.

“We know they (Riyadh) have made many mistakes in Yemen, Bahrain, Iraq and Syria, but we are still open to dialogue,” ISNA quoted Kharrazi as saying.

US sanctions

Asked about new US sanctions levied on Iranian individuals and entities this week, the former foreign minister said the moves were "violations" of the 2015 nuclear agreement in both the letter and the "spirit" of the deal. But he emphasized that Tehran remained committed to the accord and would only walk away if the US administration withdrew first.

Fighting terrorism

Kharrazi said Iran has always struggled with terrorism but is resolute in countering the threat. A double attack in June claimed by the Islamic State group left 17 people dead.

“Iran has always been vulnerable ... but it’s been stable enough to fight terrorists,” he added.

Syrian crisis

"One of the reasons that we rushed to the help of the Syrian government, and the Iraqi government, was concern about our own security, because they are very close to our borders," Kharrazi noted.

Regarding French President Emmanuel Macron's recent reversal on Syria, in which he said the removal of President Bashar al-Assad was no longer a requirement, Kharrazi said Iran welcomed the shift.

"We appreciate the position of President Macron," he said, adding: "It's more realistic."

Iran’s human rights record

Of the Islamic Republic’s human rights record, Kharrazi said evidence in espionage cases would be made public if the suspect is found guilty.

Earlier this month a Princeton University student, Xiyue Wang, was sentenced to 10 years in prison for espionage.

 

Iran Saudi relationship Iran Saudi Kamal Kharrazi