Iran First VP Japan Urged to Help End US Unilateralism

Iran First VP Japan Urged to Help End US UnilateralismIran First VP Japan Urged to Help End US Unilateralism

Iran has called on Japan to use its influence to put an end to US unilateralism in the world just as it took a praiseworthy stand in supporting global peace after the Second World War. 
“Japan must stand against US unilateralism, which is threatening independent countries and might go beyond Iran’s nuclear issue to encompass other global issues,” First Vice President Es’haq Jahangiri told Kyodo News in a recent interview. 
US President Donald Trump ripped up an international deal on Iran’s nuclear program in May and his administration snapped back sanctions on the Islamic Republic, including measures against its oil exports that went into effect on Nov. 5.  
Jahangiri said Iran stands ready to address the concerns of Japanese companies willing to continue business with the country, even as the United States is pressing its allies to get tough on OPEC’s third biggest crude producer. 
Washington had been pushing governments to cut imports of Iranian oil to zero. But, fearing a price spike, it granted Iran’s biggest buyers—Japan, China, India, South Korea, Italy, Greece, Taiwan and Turkey—temporary sanctions waivers.


New Avenues

The vice president said, “We are ready to negotiate with Japanese companies interested in continuing their business in Iran to reach new solutions to ease their concerns.”
“The Japanese government and companies have always had their own ways of [withstanding] US pressure and we hope they will again use their initiatives to remain a major oil importer for Iran,” he added. 
Jahangiri said although Tehran-Tokyo economic ties are currently affected by US policies, the two nations have long had good relations and Iran looks forward to a state visit by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, for which it does “not see any obstacle”.
“Anytime he is willing to pay a visit to Iran, Tehran is ready to welcome and host him,” he said. 
A trip by Abe would make him the first Japanese leader to visit Iran since Takeo Fukuda in 1978. 


Oil Customers

Commenting on the impact of US sanctions on Iran’s crude sales, the vice president said it has “found new customers and sold our oil to them”. 
While he did not reveal the identity of “new customers”, he said his government has started “serious negotiations” for selling more oil to Russia, China and some other Asian countries.   
Jahangiri predicted that Iran could restore its oil exports to the level before Nov. 5 even after the expiration of six-month waivers. 
He called the stated US goal of getting all the nations to reduce their imports of Iranian oil to zero “very dangerous”, but at the same time “very unlikely”. 
“I assure the world that if Iran would be deprived of its main source of income, we would not be silent and will take appropriate measures at the right time,” he said. 
Under a 2015 deal struck between Iran and six major powers—Britain, China, France, Germany, Russia and the United States—Tehran agreed to curb its nuclear activities in exchange for the lifting of economic sanctions.

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