EghtesadOnline: The new regional peace plan put forward by Iran can ensure lasting stability in the region, if supported by all Middle East countries, officials say.
"Iran, as the most powerful country in the region, has emphasized in this initiative that it is capable of guaranteeing peace," Mohammad Javad Jamali, a lawmaker, told ICANA in a recent interview.
He was referring to a plan called Hormuz Peace Endeavour (aka Hope), which was introduced by President Hassan Rouhani during his speech at the United Nations General Assembly on Wednesday.
According to the president, the initiative explores "various venues for cooperation", such as energy security, freedom of navigation and free transfer of oil and other resources to and from the Strait of Hormuz and beyond, Financial Tribune reported.
Jamali, a member of Majlis National Security and Foreign Policy Commission, said Iran is a trustworthy partner.
"Iran has proved that it fulfills its promises whenever it extends a hand of friendship to another country, so the Hormuz peace initiative is reliable," he said.
He added that the presence of foreign forces only stokes the flames of insecurity and instability in the region, and Persian Gulf states should cooperate to safeguard common interests.
"Under the current circumstances, Iran should show the world that it has a peace initiative and is seeking peace and security," Jamali said.
Call for Cooperation
During a UN Security Council meeting on Wednesday, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif elaborated on the “Hope” proposal and called on regional governments to join it.
"The initiative is based on the fact that all regional countries are duty-bound to ensure peace, stability and prosperity in the region. Together with the international community, they have common interests in maintaining freedom of navigation and energy transfer," he said, according to a video published on his Twitter account.
These regional efforts are necessary to prevent war, conflict, violence, extremism, terrorism and sectarian tensions, the senior diplomat added.
He also said the plan is aimed at increasing solidarity, mutual understanding and strengthening friendly relations among regional countries to guarantee the territorial integrity and political independence of regional states.
According to Zarif, the objectives of the initiative include boosting cooperation to uproot terrorism, extremism and sectarian tensions, and ensuring energy security, freedom of shipping and free flow of oil.
"Regional cooperation in countering terrorism is essential, especially in regions such as the Middle East and Afghanistan, where terrorist groups are more active than anywhere else," he was quoted as saying by Press TV.
In a tweet on Thursday, the foreign minister added that the “Hope” proposal entails dialogue, confidence-building, freedom of navigation, energy security, non-aggression and non-intervention.
Asadollah Abbasi, another lawmaker, said promotion of peace in the Persian Gulf is possible, if regional nations agree to collaborate with Iran.
"It seems that these countries would welcome the initiative presented by the Islamic Republic of Iran, in view of the current regional and international situation," he told ICANA in recent remarks.