Europe Should Not Mimic Trump Tantrums

 Europe Should Not Mimic Trump Tantrums Europe Should Not Mimic Trump Tantrums

Iran welcomes cooperation at all levels to bring stability to the Middle East, President Hassan Rouhani told his French counterpart on Monday, hours after US President Donald Trump lambasted Tehran again as he tours the region.

In a telephone call, Rouhani told France's new president Emmanuel Macron he was hopeful that Europe would not mimic Trump's stance against the Islamic Republic.

Visiting Saudi Arabia on Sunday, the controversial American leader singled out Iran as a key source of funding and support for militant groups in the Middle East, sending an unhelpful and unwanted message to Tehran the day after Rouhani won a second presidential term.

He said on Monday in Jerusalem that shared concern about Iran was driving Israel and many Arab states closer, calling Tehran a real threat in the region, Reuters reported.

Iran backs groups in the region that resist Israel and its unending lawlessness. Washington brands the same groups as terrorists.

"The Islamic Republic is ready for cooperation at all levels with other countries, including France, to fight against terrorism and to resolve the Syrian crisis," Rouhani told  Macron, according to IRNA.

The French leader had called to congratulate him on his landslide victory in Friday's presidential vote.

"We should bring peace and stability back to the region. We hope Europe does not fall into the trap of countries that promote their wrong interpretations of the region," Rouhani said.

Paris, which is at odds with Iran over the crisis in Syria, took one of the hardest lines against Tehran during nuclear negotiations between Iran and major powers in 2015, but has been quick to restore trade ties.

French carmakers PSA and Renault are taking advantage of the lack of US operations by piling into a resurgent Iranian market that is still off-limits to rivals fearful that Trump's administration will reimpose sanctions.

  Political Dialogue

France has said it backs Trump's call to strengthen the monitoring of the deal, but that it is committed to implementing it, including the lifting of sanctions.

Asked earlier on Monday whether Paris agreed with Trump's call to isolate Iran, the French Foreign Ministry said it would "work toward developing political dialogue that should be part of a constructive approach with regard to solving regional crises."

Rouhani said at a news conference on Monday that stability could not be achieved in the Middle East without Tehran's help.

"Who can say regional stability can be restored without Iran? Who can say the region will experience total stability without Iran?"

"The problem is that the Americans do not know our region and those who advise US officials are misleading them."

Rouhani said Iran is a force behind the fight against the self-styled Islamic State in Iraq and Syria and repeated Iran's official stance that the United States and Saudi Arabia are funding "terrorism" in the Middle East.

"Who fought against the terrorists? It was Iran, Syria, Hezbollah and Russia. But who funded the terrorists? Those who fund terrorists cannot claim they are fighting against them."


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