Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Friday urged BRICS countries to support Moscow’s new plan for security in the Persian Gulf.
Speaking at the BRICS Council of Foreign Ministers in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Lavrov called on Iran to show restraint and adhere to the treaty on non-proliferation of nuclear weapons and the agreement on guarantees with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Sputnik reported.
"The situation with Iran is a cause for serious concern ... We are calling on our Iranian colleagues to show restraint. We want to remark that they still diligently adhere to the NPT, the comprehensive safeguard agreement with the IAEA and its Additional Protocol", Lavrov at the BRICS meeting which is a trading bloc comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.
He also called on the remaining parties to the Iran nuclear deal of do their part the accord known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.
He said it is "counterproductive to demand that Iran unilaterally keep its commitments under the JCPOA, when other participants, our Western colleagues above all, do not do that."
"We are urging the European troika to recognize its responsibility for maintaining the nuclear deal, keeping their promises on the development of economic ties with Iran without any obstacles", the minister said.
The statement comes after the Russian Foreign Ministry on July 24 proposed plans to organize an expert conference in September on the topic of promoting security in the Persian Gulf.
The main principles underlying the concept are a step-by-step approach, multilateralism, and strict observance of international law, primarily in regards to the UN Charter and Security Council resolutions. The future strategic task outlined in the document is the creation of a system of joint security efforts and cooperation in the Persian Gulf with equal involvement from all the states in the region, according to the Russian Foreign Ministry.
Tensions in the region escalated last week when Iranian forces seized the UK-flagged Stena Impero oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz, a strategic waterway that links the Gulf of Oman with the Persian Gulf.
The incident is seen by the West as Iran’s response to the seizure of a supertanker by UK Royal Marines and the authorities of Gibraltar on July 4. The oil tanker, Grace 1, was suspected of carrying Iranian oil to Syria in violation of the European Union sanctions.
Iran rejected the claim saying it impounded the tanker after it collided with an Iranian fishing boat and violated maritime rules.
Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi said, “Contrary to Britain’s announcement, the tanker was not bound for Syria, and the port mentioned is not capable of receiving such a tanker.”