Russia welcomes Iran’s proposal for lasting peace among the Persian Gulf nations, and stands ready to help it come to fruition, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has said.
Signing a binding agreement to refrain from violence would be a step in the right direction and defuse the growing tensions in the region, Lavrov said on Friday. He was praising the idea of the non-aggression pact Iran offered its neighbors earlier, without specifically mentioning the states that could become part of it.
A “number” of Gulf states “are ready to consider this initiative,” the minister told reporters, adding that Russia “will be ready to assist this process.”
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Lavrov also stated that Moscow would welcome the start of meaningful dialogue between Iran and the US, but would not “impose” its role as a mediator.
The minister criticized the US pressure against Iran, saying that the hardline push for more sanctions leaves no room for negotiations, and Russia will not support this.
Talking from a position of ‘first I’ll strangle you economically and then you’ll be begging to reach a deal with us’ is not something we consider an [appropriate] model of foreign policy.
The tensions between Iran and the US escalated this month when Tehran partially suspended its commitments under the 2015 deal on its nuclear program, known as the JCPOA. The move followed several rounds of re-imposed sanctions by Washington, which unilaterally withdrew from the agreement last year.
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The US deployed an aircraft carrier strike group to the Gulf and announced plans to send extra troops to Iraq, which neighbors Iran. Officials in Tehran responded by saying that they are prepared to target US warships in the event of any provocation.
Iran had denounced the sanctions and vowed to retaliate against any form of “aggression.”“We hope that we can start a dialogue,
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