‘US Bans on Independent Nations against Int’l Law’

Iran’s top parliamentarian says Washington’s ratification of unilateral sanctions against independent countries is a gross violation of international law.

Addressing a Meeting of Parliament Speakers of Eurasian Countries in the South Korean capital, Seoul, Iran’s Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani said Washington’s ratification of unilateral economic sanctions against independent countries is a blatant violation of international law and the UN Charter as well as the multilateral trade system.

He said Tehran rejects the US Senate’s recent decision to impose sanctions on Iranian and Russian institutions and nationals, and believes such measures run counter to US commitments, under international law, concerning non-interference in other countries’ affairs.

He said the Eurasian countries’ governments and parliaments should work out a mechanism to prevent such arbitrary and bullying behaviour and neutralize the effects of these sanctions.

In his remarks, the top parliamentarian also said the idea of holding the Meeting jointly initiated by the South Korean parliament and Russia’s Duma can serve as a constructive mechanism on the international stage provided that it is geared to proper utilization of member states’ potential.

He said a collective effort is required to tap into the existing potentialities and tackle the challenges that member states are facing. He said adoption of policies in such areas as energy, industry, trade, transportation of goods, and other economic areas can play a key role in boosting regional cooperation.

Larijani also stressed that necessary measures should be adopted to counter common challenges and threats, namely terrorism, extremism and violence as well as unilateral economic sanctions which affect free trade relations at the regional and international levels.

The parliament speaker noted that Iran, given its key geopolitical situation as well as economic, cultural and security potentialities, stands ready to contribute heavily to development and welfare of, and creation of a stable security system in the Eurasia region.

He added Iran also enjoys great potential in the field of energy and has a safe and economically viable route to transfer energy commodities to world markets, not to mention its wealth of experience in fighting terrorism, organized crime and drug trade, all of which can help boost regional cooperation and bring about convergence among member states.

Elsewhere in his remarks, Larijani said the Eurasia region as well as the whole world is facing numerous political, security and economic challenges and crises. Unfortunately, he noted, terrorism and extremism have turned into a destructive global threat, jeopardizing international peace and security.

Among the dire consequences of these scourges, he said, is that thousands of innocent people have been killed or wounded in such countries as Syria, Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan and Yemen, and millions have been displaced.

He also categorically condemned acts of terror committed by ISIS in Asian and European countries, including the recent terrorist attack in Tehran which left several people dead or wounded.

He called for efforts to identify and counter the ideological origins of terrorist groups while denouncing the Takfiri-Wahhabi ideology as a deviant current and driving force behind terrorist acts in different parts of the world, particularly in the Middle East.

Larijani then noted that the US and certain regional countries are banging the drum for fighting terrorism while it has become evident they are supporting terrorism instead.

Larijani then touched upon Syria, and said the current crisis in the country intensified by foreign interference has led to a humanitarian disaster and destroyed the nation’s vital infrastructure.

He reiterated Iran’s backing for Syria in fight against terrorism while highlighting people’s role in determining their political system as well as the importance of a political solution to the current crisis gripping the country.

The parliament speaker also referred to the Astana talks brokered by Iran, Russia and Turkey. He said the three countries are making coordinated efforts to expedite the process of reaching a political settlement of the crisis. The attempts, he said, have resulted in the establishment of a relative ceasefire and de-escalation of violence in different parts of the country.

Larijani also referred to the Saudi aggression on Yemen. He said Saudi attacks have caused a human tragedy and massacre in the country. The speaker then underlined that political and arms support for the aggressors by some super powers has drawn out the conflict and led to a rise in casualties among civilians. He said Iran stresses the futility of a military solution and highlights the need for an end to the Saudi aggression and resumption of intra-Yemeni talks with the participation of all parties to the conflict and without foreign interference.

Larijani also said Iran believes the tension on the Korean peninsula can only be settled through political dialogue and peaceful means as well as regional cooperation.

It is necessary to refrain from any move that would fuel tension in the region, Larijani noted.

He then underlined the importance of establishing and strengthening regional parliamentary institutions, and said institutions such as the Asian Parliamentary Assembly can play a key role in promoting parliamentary activities in Eurasia.

He further urged the Meeting of Parliament Speakers of Eurasian Countries to establish a secretariat and draw up its statute to turn this fledgling institution into a dynamic and influential body on the international stage. He said the Iranian parliament in Tehran is ready to host a meeting of the committee tasked with drawing up the draft statute.

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