Zarif Underlines Common Stances With Venezuela

Zarif Underlines Common Stances With VenezuelaZarif Underlines Common Stances With Venezuela

The foreign minister highlighted the common stances adopted by Iran and Venezuela on the application of force and sanctions by world powers against some countries, denouncing the United States’ recent move to declare Venezuela a threat.

“We are glad to see Venezuela sharing similar policies with the Islamic Republic of Iran regarding the use of force and sanctions against some countries,” Mohammad Javad Zarif said in a joint press conference with his Venezuelan counterpart Delcy Rodriguez in Tehran on Monday.

Referring to the US move, he said, “We believe that, as in the case of Iran, Venezuela’s endurance and resistance against foreign threats will make the move fail,” Fars news agency reported.

US President Barack Obama signed and issued an executive order declaring Venezuela a national security threat on March 9 and ordered sanctions against seven officials from the oil-rich country in the worst bilateral diplomatic dispute since socialist President Nicolas Maduro took office in 2013.

According to Reuters, US officials said declaring any country a threat to national security is the first step in starting a US sanctions program as the same process has been followed with countries such as Iran and Syria.

“Deep relations between the two countries, which are based on common viewpoints, interests and stances, provide the necessity for improved bilateral cooperation,” he said.

Pointing to the “good talks” between him and Rodriguez on bilateral, regional and international issues, Zarif said, “We consulted on bilateral economic cooperation and political matters, particularly regarding Venezuela joining the United Nations Security Council and the role it can play in resolving regional crises.”

The Venezuelan foreign minister, for her part, thanked Iran for the support it has shown for Venezuela against Obama’s executive order, voicing satisfaction with the meeting.

Rodriguez underlined strengthening bilateral relations as among the main topics discussed in the meeting, saying, “Today we reviewed the frameworks of bilateral cooperation,” particularly in political, economic, trade and energy fields.

Referring to the cooperation between Caracas and Tehran as OPEC (Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries) members, she expressed hope that it would prove useful in preserving the interests of the two countries and other OPEC member states.

Venezuela as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council is committed to a peaceful policy based on compliance with international law and the UN Charter, Rodriguez said, expressing her country’s strong opposition to any unilateral move against other countries.

She described her country’s friendly relations with Iran as “strategic”, saying, “we are here to deliver a message of friendship from Maduro.”