EghtesadOnline: Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif managed to convince lawmakers on Monday that his ministry is effectively fulfilling its responsibilities in the area of foreign diplomacy to help overcome challenges confronting the country.
The top diplomat had been asked to answer the questions of three lawmakers during an open session of the parliament, ISNA reported.
Lawmaker Jahanbakhsh Mohebbinia asked Zarif about the ministry’s diplomatic efforts toward eliminating regional and global threats against the Islamic Republic.
Zarif explained that the Foreign Ministry closely monitors the latest developments in the region and the world, and presents its findings to top authorities on a regular basis and uses the “most effective methods” to implement the guidelines set out by the decision-making bodies.
“Over the past two years, the United States and Israel have used all their resources to exert pressure on the Islamic Republic of Iran, and we have spared no effort to counter these pressures,” he said, adding that the country is paying the price for its pursuit of independence, Financial Tribune reported.
The minister noted that the Iran nuclear deal signed between Tehran and world powers in 2015 alleviated the fear of military confrontation, as it helped the country get out of Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter, which allows UN-mandated external action.
Jamshid Jafarpour, another parliamentarian, asked a question about the foreign policy apparatus’ “lack of attention to economic diplomacy”, particularly now that the country is under renewed US sanctions.
The senior diplomat said the Foreign Ministry is working hard to help improve people’s livelihood and that is why an economic department has been established at the ministry.
“Under the current circumstances, one of the responsibilities of the Foreign Ministry is to help improve people’s livelihood and economic conditions, and it has done its best to carry out this duty. The establishment of an economic department at the Foreign Ministry was in line with these efforts,” he said.
Zarif noted that one of the main priorities of the department is to attract investment from Iranian businessmen living abroad.
Lawmaker Ali Adyani asked Zarif to comment on the ministry’s “failure to fully implement” a series of guidelines laid out by Leader of Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei regarding the nuclear accord.
The minister criticized attempts aimed at undermining the nuclear deal as well as efforts of those who negotiated it and are working to keep the painstakingly achieved agreement alive after the US exit in May.
“It is easy to criticize the achievements of the Islamic Republic of Iran, but we need to look at the ground realities,” he said, adding that the Foreign Ministry is abiding by the decisions of the country’s top authorities.
Mohebbinia and Jafarpour were convinced by the answers provided by Zarif, while a vote was held to see whether lawmakers found his remarks on the implementation of the Leader’s guidelines satisfactory or not.
Out of 194 lawmakers present, 102 said they were satisfied with the answer, while 71 said his explanations were not convincing. There were seven abstentions.
INTRO: “Over the past two years, the United States and Israel have used all their resources to exert pressure on the Islamic Republic of Iran, and we have spared no effort to counter these pressures”