Former Iranian diplomat laments Tehran’s ‘confused’ policy on Moscow

A former Iranian diplomat has undermined the effectiveness of Iran’s diplomatic approach towards Russia, noting that Moscow has questioned Iran’s territorial integrity twice within a span of a few months.

Hamid Aboutalebi, Iran’s former Ambassador to Australia and a former presidential advisor, in an interview with the Tehran-based Sharq newspaper on Sunday, warned that Russia will repeat the same behavior if Iran does not change its policies.

The remarks came after Russia supported the United Arab Emirates in its territorial claim over the three Iranian islands of Abu Musa, the Greater and the Lesser Tunbs in the Persian Gulf in a Russian-Arab forum held earlier this month in Morocco.

“When we do not have a coherent and balanced foreign policy based on our national interests regarding the whole world and of course great powers and regional and extra-regional actors, we cannot expect the necessary response to such actions,” Aboutalebi said.

He said the previous Iranian administrations had a much clearer track record than the current administration which has a ‘confused’ foreign policy on the issue.

“This is why previously the Chinese backed the same claim by the United Arab Emirates, the Japanese repeated it, and the Russians supported the UAE’s claim on the ownership of the three islands not once but twice within a few months,” he expressed sorrow.

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