Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Tuesday that weapons and missiles are important, but a nation’s military spending cannot determine its power.
“If it was so, Saudi Arabia with $76 billion [worth of military spending] must have been stronger than Iran with a military spending of about $6 million.”
Speaking at an event on the occasion of the 42nd anniversary of the victory of Islamic Revolution, the Iranian foreign minister said the source of power is diplomacy.
He said diplomacy is not just a means of power; it is a means of power conversion, and a cost-cutting tool.
“Some think diplomacy is against military power while diplomacy is next to military power.”
Zarif also noted that today, diplomacy is not only a means of reducing the costs of failure and institutionalising achievements, but is itself a factor of power.
“Without diplomacy, the achievements of power cannot be institutionalised. Moreover, without diplomacy we cannot be powerful. That is, you need diplomacy to achieve field victories. This fact does not mean submission or acceptance of domination. It means acceptance of the opinions of others.”
The foreign minister added that “If we believe martyrdom creates power, why don’t we believe that diplomacy, resistance, dialogue and negotiation can create power?”
Referring to the martyrdom of General Qassem Soleimani, he went on to say that US President Donald Trump says he has spent two trillion dollars, but after Soleimani’s assassination, he understands he was mistaken and must leave the region.
Iran’s foreign minister reiterated if it was not for the support of General Suleimani in the 2001 international talks on Afghanistan peace in Bonn, we would not have achieved victories in that summit.
“The amount of help Soleimani offered in reaching an agreement during the Bonn negotiations was greater than anyone else’s. Diplomacy and fieldwork complement each other,” he concluded.