Iran pushes for dialogue with Gulf countries

World Sunday 19/February/2017 13:42 PM
By: Times News Service
Iran pushes for dialogue with Gulf countries

Munich: Iran's foreign minister on Sunday stepped up efforts to improve ties with Gulf countries urging them to work with Tehran to address "anxieties" and violence across the region.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani last week travelled to Oman and Kuwait to try improve ties, his first visit to the Gulf countries since taking power in 2013.
"On regional dialogue, I'm modest and I'm focusing on the Gulf. We have enough problems in this region so we want to start a dialogue with countries we call brothers," Mohammad Javad Zarif told delegates at the Munich Security Conference.
His comments were in response to a question on whether Tehran would also consider a region-wide dialogue that included Israel.
"We need to address common problems and perceptions that have given rise to anxieties and the level of violence in the region."
Zarif earlier in his speech had criticised four-decades of well financed terrorism.
Zarif once again dismissed any suggestions his country would ever seek to develop nuclear weapons. When asked about the new U.S. administration's tough rhetoric on Iran's role in the region and calls to review a nuclear deal a with major powers, he said Iran did not respond well to threats.