Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has expressed hope that Saudi Arabia would not seek to achieve nuclear weapons.
He underlined that all countries are entitled to have peaceful nuclear energy for peaceful purposes including uranium enrichment based on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT).
“We don’t know yet the real intention of Saudi Arabia but based on the NPT, all states are entitled to have peaceful nuclear program including uranium enrichment,” he was quoted as saying in a Farsi interview with Etemad newspaper.
He said this is the principle policy of the Islamic Republic of Iran for today and future towards other countries’ right to have peaceful nuclear program.
“But we maintain that each country seeking to achieve nuclear weapons endangers its own and others’ security and we hope Saudi Arabia would not be after adopting such a wrong policy,” he said.
The Iranian foreign minister underlined that the US government is not in a position to deprive any state of the right to enrich uranium under the NPT.
The remarks came in reaction to the earlier anti-Iran rhetoric by Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman who said his country does not want to acquire any nuclear bomb, “but without a doubt if Iran developed a nuclear bomb, we will follow suit as soon as possible.”
In a Thursday interview with CBS, the crown prince also downplayed Iran’s power, saying Iran was far from being a rival to Saudi Arabia.
The statements come as Iran has repeatedly announced that its nuclear program is totally peaceful and the country is not after nuclear weapons.
Iran insists that based on the International Atomic Energy Agency’s NPT, it is entitled to pursue its peaceful nuclear program.
The remarks by the Saudi crown prince were also rejected as baseless by Iranian Foreign Ministry’s Spokesman Bahram Qassemi who called Bin Salman a “delusional naïve person” whose remarks don’t deserve a response.