Malta Urges Closer Iran-EU Cooperation

Malta Urges Closer Iran-EU Cooperation  Malta Urges Closer Iran-EU Cooperation

Maltese Foreign Minister George William Vella called for closer cooperation between the European Union and Iran to help settle regional conflicts, given the Islamic Republic's thorough understanding of regional and international developments.

"Malta believes that Iran has developed correct analyses of issues in the region and beyond, and that's why it can offer the European Union a great help in resolving conflicts and establishing security in different countries," Vella said on Sunday in a meeting with Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani in Tehran, according to Tasnim News Agency.

Vella noted that Malta will assume the rotating presidency of EU as of January 2017, adding that his country is determined to become acquainted with other countries' culture and views in order to launch closer cooperation with them. The visiting Maltese diplomat hailed Iran for honoring its commitments under its nuclear deal with world powers, stressing that this has encouraged many countries to seek revival of ties with Iran.

Larijani touched on the strategic location of Malta in Europe, saying the island country can be a corridor of interaction between Iran and Europe.

The speaker referred to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, the official name of the landmark nuclear deal between Tehran and P5+1 (Russia, China, the United States, Britain and France, plus Germany), as a good example of negotiated solution to conflicts, stressing that other tensions in the region should also be dealt with through dialogue.

Vella's trip to Iran comes against the backdrop of a new wave of interest in ties with Iran after the JCPOA went into effect on January 16. The comprehensive nuclear deal terminated all nuclear-related sanctions imposed by the United Nations, the European Union and the United States against Iran in return for time-bound constraints on Tehran's nuclear activities.