Cooperation Only Way to Solve ME Problems

Cooperation Only Way to Solve ME Problems Cooperation Only Way to Solve ME Problems

Leader's advisor Ali Akbar Velayati says there is no other way but regional cooperation to settle Middle East problems.  

Velayati, who was meeting Lebanese Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil in Tehran on Sunday, praised long-standing Tehran-Beirut ties, which have paved the way for today's close relations, ISNA reported.  He said Iran and Lebanon have the potential to increase bilateral collaboration and trade.

Although Lebanon is under the pressure of the Zionists and terrorists, its resistance against them is something it should be proud of, the former foreign minister noted. Velayati, who is also the director of the Center for Strategic Research of the Expediency Council, pointed to the Syria crisis, stressing that Iran and Lebanon share views on the problem.

"No foreigner can decide for the Syrian people as to who should rule their country," he said. "This is what Syrians themselves should decide."

Bassil said Lebanon believes extremist groups pose a "significant" threat to the region, a fact which necessitates enhanced regional collaboration to deal with the scourge.

"Some countries did all they could to keep Iran out of regional equations, but Iran proved itself as a notable international player through its advances."

At a press conference after the meeting, Velayati said the resistance front consisting of Iran and some other regional countries stands against both the Zionists and terrorists.

Terrorists were eyeing Lebanon as a target for their attacks a while ago, but thanks to the bravery of its people, they have been turned away, the top advisor said.  Velayati hoped for Syria to succeed in the battle against terrorism, reiterating that all countries of the region should contribute to efforts aimed at eliminating extremists.

  Global Menace

The Lebanese foreign minister described terrorism as a global threat, acknowledging that Middle East nations have the potential to root it out.

Aside from fighting terrorism, the two countries should pay attention to development, putting economic cooperation on top of the agenda, Bassil said.

Iran has many scientific achievements resulting in considerable capacities which Lebanon can tap into, the Lebanese official said.

On the implementation phase of the July nuclear deal between Iran and major powers, Velayati said it is necessary to wait and see if western countries will fulfill commitments or go back on their word, which would make the Iranian people more pessimistic about their intentions. Iran has honored its pledges and has no qualms about decisions regarding implementation of the international accord.