Iran ready to improve ties with all regional states: Rouhani

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said that Tehran wanted to establish close ties with all countries in the Middle East. (AP)
Updated 17 February 2019
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Iran ready to improve ties with all regional states: Rouhani

  • ‘Iran is ready to work with regional states to preserve security in the Middle East’

DUBAI: Iran is ready to work with all of its neighbors to secure peace in the Middle East in the face of US and Israeli aggression, President Hassan Rouhani said on Sunday.

But pressure is building on Tehran after President Donald Trump pulled the United States out of a 2015 nuclear deal with six world powers and re-imposed sanctions. Saudi Arabia welcomed the move.

“Iran is ready to work with regional states to preserve security in the Middle East,” Rouhani said in a public speech in the southern Hormozgan province, broadcast live on state TV. “We want to establish brotherly ties with all countries of the region ... Iran has never started any aggression in the region.”

“Those regional states that believe Israel and America can establish security are wrong. We, the Muslims, should ensure the regional security,” Rouhani said, to chants of “Death to America,” and “Death to Israel.”

Sunni group Jaish Al-Adl (Army of Justice), which says it seeks greater rights and better living conditions for the ethnic minority Baluchis, claimed responsibility for the attack that killed 27 members of Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guards Corps.

The Revolutionary Guards have threatened Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Pakistan with retaliation.

Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Pakistan deny backing the militants. Iran’s foreign ministry on Sunday summoned Pakistan’s ambassador to protest about Wednesday’s attack.


UN rights forum condemns Israeli use of force at deadly Gaza protests

Updated 34 min 15 sec ago
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UN rights forum condemns Israeli use of force at deadly Gaza protests

  • The UN condemend Israel’s “apparent intentional use of unlawful lethal and other excessive force”
  • UN previously said that Israeli security forces may have committed war crimes and crimes against humanity

GENEVA: The United Nations Human Rights Council on Friday condemned Israel’s “apparent intentional use of unlawful lethal and other excessive force” against civilian protesters in Gaza and called for perpetrators of all violations in the strip to face justice.
The Geneva forum adopted a resolution on accountability, brought by Pakistan on behalf of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC), by a vote of 23 states in favor, 8 against with 15 abstentions.
European countries were divided. The United States does not participate, having quit the body last year over perceived anti-Israel bias.
The text was based on a report by a UN inquiry which said that Israeli security forces may have committed war crimes and crimes against humanity in killing 189 Palestinians and wounding more than 6,100 at weekly protests last year.