Wednesday, February 1, 2023

Zarif’s Visit to N Korea Sends Clear Message to US: Analyst

A senior expert says the upcoming visit of Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif to North Korea is to send this clear message to the US that if Washington decides to exert more pressure on Iran, the Islamic Republic will show more resistance and get closer to the US’ opponents.

In an interview with Fararu website, Rahman Qahremanpour said there is no clear sign yet on Iran’s decision to change its foreign policy because while in New York, Zarif sent ambiguous messages to the White House.

“On the one hand, Iran’s foreign ministry spokesman said the country has no plan for talks with the US and on the other hand, Zarif said a group of warmongers are preventing Trump from holding talks with Iran. That means if it wasn’t for these people, Iran would have no problem with holding talks with Trump,” he said.

“But his visit to North Korea may have a clearer message. This will show the US that if it plans to exert more pressure on Iran, Iran will take longer steps to get closer to the US enemies,” he added.

The analyst went on to say that despite diplomatic ties between Iran and North Korea, the two sides have never gotten close to each other. “But amid the current situation and due to the failure of the US-North Korea talks, the visit of the Iranian foreign minister to North Korea is meaningful. Zarif has decided to pay the visit to send a clear message to the US.”

Qahremanpour, an expert in international affairs, then rejected some speculations that Iran is seeking to restore its nuclear program and said the upcoming visit does not necessarily imply that Iran is restoring its nuclear program hindered after the clinching the Iran nuclear deal back in 2015.

“The situations of Iran and North Korea are different from each other. The nuclear case of North Korea has taken a different road since its beginning. The country has been seeking to produce nuclear bomb. North Korea wants to blackmail the US into accepting its conditions through its nuclear program. But Iran’s case is totally different,” he noted.

Back on Monday, Zarif said he plans to visit North Korea without giving the date of the visit.

“The date of this trip will be set and announced soon,” he added.

North Korea’s top diplomat, Ri Yong Ho, whose country faces international and US sanctions, visited Iran in August as the United States reintroduced sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

A North Korean delegation, headed by the country’s deputy foreign minister, started a tour of Iran, Syria, Azerbaijan, and Mongolia a couple of days ago. The details of the visits have not been disclosed, but experts believe Pyongyang is trying to improve its ties with its friends following the failure of talks with US.

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