Japan to Continue Cooperation for Mideast Peace

Japan to Continue Cooperation for Mideast Peace
Japan to Continue Cooperation for Mideast Peace

Japan's prime minister expressed concern over recent tensions in the Middle East, saying Tokyo will continue its cooperation with Tehran as a key player to ensure peace in the region. 
"It is worrying that in the current [critical health] conditions, we still see tensions in the Middle East. We believe it is essential to protect peace and stability in the region," Shinzo Abe said in a phone conversation with President Hassan Rouhani on Tuesday, reported. 
The world is now grappling with a coronavirus pandemic that started from China in December and spread rapidly across the world.
Abe described Iran as an influential country in maintaining the region's peace, saying Japan will keep up its mutual efforts along this line. 
Rouhani regretted the recent adverse developments in Iraq and the Persian Gulf, blaming them on the United States which, he said, has always been the initiator of tensions. 
Iraq has seen renewed assaults by the self-styled Islamic State terrorist group in recent weeks while Iranian and American armed forces confronted each other in the Persian Gulf. 
Abe and Rouhani stressed the need to protect global peace and security, and continue consultations toward this end. 
They stressed that during the viral outbreak, tensions need to be reduced and countries should honor humanitarian ties. 
Rouhani also censured the US for intensifying its illegal sanctions on the Iranian nation, in spite of difficulties in controlling the spread of the disease and its severe economic consequences. 
"With the tightened American cruel and inhuman sanctions against Iran, today we are facing difficulty in supplying medical equipment and food," he said. 
Washington imposed serious sanctions on Tehran in 2018 after it quit the 2015 nuclear deal and has refused to ease pressure despite the global outcry. 
Abe described the US policy as "incorrect", stressing that philanthropic measures should be placed on top of all countries' agenda in the current difficult situation. 
The top officials also called for expansion of bilateral relations, especially in the field of trade, and hoped previous agreements would be implemented soon. 


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