0208 GMT May 21, 2022
Palestine’s issue is the most important priority of the Muslim world, said the Iranian Parliament speaker.
Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf made the remark in an address to the 16th Parliamentary Union of OIC Member States (PUIC) Conference in Istanbul on Friday, adding the resistance front is among the reasons for Israel’s abject humiliation and the growing global hatred toward the Zionist regime, which will eventually lead to its annihilation, IRNA reported.
He said for over seven decades, the world has been witnessing atrocious policies and moves by Israel toward Palestinians, which have fundamentally violated human rights and undermined Palestinian people’s dignity.
Qalibaf noted that the Zionists’ invasion of Palestine was an extensive and preplanned effort backed by the global arrogance to occupy the entire country and wipe out the Palestinian nation; exactly the same as what Western countries did when they first became familiar with America and Australia.
He gave the assurance that the Zionist regime is declining.
Commenting on the current situation in Afghanistan, Qalibaf said the country’s issue is among the Muslim world’s main concerns.
He described as critical the situation in Afghanistan 20 years after the destructive presence of foreign forces in the country, saying the unfavorable circumstances are the occupiers’ legacy for the oppressed Afghan people.
Qalibaf urged the Muslim states, through adopting a collective approach, to immediately place on their agenda delivering humanitarian aid to the Afghan people.
Earlier in the day, Qalibaf met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, saying the comprehensive document for Iran-Turkey cooperation is being finalized, which is a symbol of the two sides’ strong will and determination for expanding bilateral relations.
The meeting was also attended by Mustafa Şentop, the speaker of the Grand National Assembly, IRNA reported.
Qalibaf also called for the promotion of trade ties between the two countries.
Voicing Iran’s support for the 3+3 format in the Caucasus, he stressed that all Caucasus countries should have good relations with each other in order to help develop the region.
Commenting on the Vienna talks on the restoration of the 2015 nuclear deal, the Iranian Parliament speaker said major powers have to learn that they must not impose their will on other countries.
“In case they accept respecting others’ interests, an agreement will be within reach.”
Iran signed the nuclear deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), with the P5+1 in 2015.
In 2018, the U.S. withdrew from the nuclear deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), and reimposed its unilateral sanctions on Iran in a bid to cripple the country’s economy and bring the Islamic Republic to the negotiating table and hammer out a new deal, a target it failed to achieve.
A diplomatic process has started in the Austrian capital since April aimed at restoring the 2015 nuclear deal, as part of which seven rounds of talks have so far been held between Iran and the remaining parties to the agreement, namely China, Russia, France, Britain and Germany.
The Turkish president said economic cooperation between Ankara and Tehran has expanded over the past months despite the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic and its negative impacts on global trade transactions.
Erdoğan called for the development of bilateral economic relations, expressing hope that the Vienna talks would justly produce a favorable result.
On Afghanistan’s developments and refugee crisis, he said international organizations have to help Iran organize Afghan migrants.
Erdoğan harbored hope to visit Iran in the near future.
Close cooperation call
Speaking to his Turkish counterpart on the same day, Qalibaf expressed hope that in the near future, the strategic agreements between the two countries will be finalized, Tasnim News Agency reported.
“Undoubtedly, the two neighboring countries of Iran and Turkey can play an effective and positive role in regional and international developments through close cooperation,” he said.
Şentop said Turkey is also determined to develop ties with Iran within the framework of parliamentary relations, while noting that the Turkish president is scheduled to visit Tehran to promote bilateral relations.
He added the two countries’ parliamentary friendship groups should become more active.
In a meeting with Turkish CEOs and investors on Thursday night in Istanbul, Qalibaf stressed that Iran’s legislature and government prioritized expanding ties with neighboring countries.
On their parts, Turkey’s CEOs and businessmen discussed challenges and problems in trade with Iran, and made proposals for increasing investments in the country.
The Iranian speaker underscored that the Parliament and government of the Islamic Republic are serious about strengthening trade ties with neighboring nations, adding that they want to continue bilateral trade with those states even after the removal of U.S. sanctions.
Prior to leaving Tehran for Istanbul on Wednesday, Qalibaf said his participation in the 16th PUIC conference is a favorable opportunity for expansion of relations with regional and Muslim countries.
He added that during the trip, the speakers of the Muslim states’ parliaments will convene to discuss Palestine’s issue as well as Afghan migrants’ influx to their countries.
Qalibaf also urged that parliamentary relations between Tehran and Ankara be boosted, ICANA reported.
The Parliament speaker said currently, the preparations and arrangements are being made for finalizing the document for all-out cooperation between Iran and Turkey, stressing that the trip provides an opportunity to discuss the required collaborations and coordination to this end.
He added that Iran and Turkey naturally have numerous joint opportunities for improving bilateral ties at regional and international levels.
The Iranian Parliament speaker was accompanied by Adel Najafzadeh, the head of Iran-Turkey Parliamentary Friendship Group, as well as three members of the Parliament’s National Security and Foreign Policy Committee, namely Sara Fallahi, Ebrahim Rezaei and Abolfazl Amouei.