Rouhani: Diplomacy Key to Resolving Regional Challenges
EghtesadOnline: President Hassan Rouhani said on Monday the settlement of the Yemen crisis would help ease tensions in the region, clearing the way for addressing other regional challenges through diplomacy.
“In our view, [the end of] the Yemen war is crucial to resolving major regional issues, and if a cessation of hostilities can be secured, an obstacle to [a thaw] in relations between Iran and Saudi Arabia will be removed,” Rouhani said in a press conference in Tehran on Monday, according to President.ir.
Pointing to mediation efforts by regional countries to help defuse tensions between Tehran and Riyadh, he said the Islamic Republic believes that the problems need to be resolved by regional states themselves.
“Besides Pakistan, other countries such as Iraq have been trying [to help facilitate de-escalation]. We are open to settling regional issues through dialogue with regional countries, including Saudi Arabia,” Financial Tribune quoted him as saying.
The president added that relations between Iran and the UAE, part of a Saudi-led coalition fighting against Yemen’s Iran-allied Houthi movement, have been on the mend and the two sides’ officials have exchanged visits.
“The ties between Iran and the UAE have improved over the past months and are heading in a positive direction,” he said.
Rouhani stressed that Tehran will continue to reduce its commitment to the 2015 nuclear deal until the European parties to the accord adopt effective measures to compensate for the negative financial impact of US sanctions, which were reimposed after Washington’s pullout from the agreement last year.
Iran has gradually scaled back its nuclear commitments since May by exceeding limits on the purity level and stockpile of enriched uranium and stepping up its nuclear research and development program.
Rouhani noted that Iran will start working on more advanced uranium enrichment centrifuges in the near future.
The president reiterated that Tehran is open to holding talks with the US whenever it lifts economic sanctions on Iran.