Man, Nature Suffering Terror-Induced Calamities

Man, Nature Suffering Terror-Induced CalamitiesMan, Nature Suffering Terror-Induced Calamities

President Hassan Rouhani warned that in West Asia humans and nature alike are suffering from the raging violence being promoted by terrorists.

"The West Asia region is not only facing hotter climate conditions and challenges of continued extensive drought, but it is also grappling with the scourge of terrorism and extremist violence," the president said. "In other words, violence against man and nature are the dual calamities befallen the West Asia region."

Addressing a plenary meeting of the United Nations Sustainable Development Summit 2015 at the UN headquarters in New York on Saturday, Rouhani said terrorists and extremists are responsible for the disastrous situation.


"Terrorists tend to grow and thrive in lands that are deprived and damaged by environmental disasters and easily pour across borders like haze. Terrorist groups crush the sustainable development goals."

By creating security concerns, terrorists have forced governments to shift their focus entirely away from environmental considerations onto addressing such concerns.

"And the continuation of this situation results in further poverty and environmental destruction. Not only have terrorism and violence damaged the environment, but also they have taken sustainable development out of the agenda of countries, forcing them to expend their national resources on fighting insecurity."

Iran's government is environmentally responsible and committed to supporting international efforts to preserve nature and achieve sustainable development, he said, according to a transcript of his remarks posted on his official website.

"The Islamic Republic of Iran has already contributed seriously and deeply to the realization of the millennium development goals. My country has had an active participation in drafting the post-2015 development agenda and will continue its constructive cooperation to fulfill its commitments at national, regional and international levels.

***Balanced Approach

"As an environmentally friendly government, we have set our policies based on a balanced approach between economic development and environmental protection."

Citing examples of steps Iran has taken in this regard, the president said, "Increasing environmental awareness across the board, introducing environmental education in school curriculums, revamping dam-building policies, reviving endangered wetlands and exerting round-the-clock efforts to preserve endangered lakes are all examples of only a small part of our commitment toward the sustainable development goals."

He said the nuclear pact reached between Iran and the P5+1 (the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany) in July following nearly two years of negotiations has provided favorable conditions for "regional and international cooperation including in the field of environmental preservation."

"We are eager to cooperate with our neighbors to promote regional sustainable development through active environmental diplomacy, constructive relations with other countries, transfer of technology and knowhow and participation in joint scientific activities to fulfill our share in building a more sustainable world immune from environmental threats," he added.