TEHRAN (FNA)- A prominent Egyptian expert and journalist called on the international community to grant this year’s Nobel Peace Prize to Iranian President Hassan Rouhani for his efforts to restore peace between Tehran and the West.
“Like US President Barack Obama who received the Nobel Peace Prize at the beginning of his presidency in October 2009, Rouhani also deserves receiving the Prize in 2013,” Iran Expert at Al-Azhar University in Cairo Mohammed Mohsen Abu al-Nour said on Wednesday.
“I urge the Nobel board of juries to grant him the Prize to encourage him to increase efforts to revive reconciliation talks between the US and Iran,” he added.
Last Tuesday, Iran’s President Rouhani stressed during his address to the 68th UN General Assembly meeting that Iran is ready for talks with the US, but “on equal footing and with mutual respect”, yet he said he is not hearing a single voice from Washington.
Also after returning Tehran, Rouhani issued an order for studying the possibility of the resumption of direct flights between Iran and the US to facilitate visits of the two countries’ nationals.
“He has ordered studying the start of direct flights between Iran and the United States in order to obviate the problems facing the Iranian expatriates’ visits,” Presidential Advisor and Acting Head of the High Council of Iranians Affairs Abroad (HCIAA) Akbar Torkan announced on Monday.
The United States and Iran broke diplomatic relations in April 1980, after Iranian students seized the United States’ espionage center at its embassy in Tehran. The two countries have had tense relations ever since, but have shown willingness to attend talks to help resolve regional issues, including security in Iraq. Yet, the two countries have avoided talks on bilateral issues for the last thirty years.
Washington and its Western allies accuse Iran of trying to develop nuclear weapons under the cover of a civilian nuclear program, while they have never presented any corroborative evidence to substantiate their allegations. Iran denies the charges and insists that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only.
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