Turkish foreign minister welcomes Iran-US détente

Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has welcomed the recent diplomatic developments in Tehran-Washington relations, saying détente between Iran and the US will benefit Turkey.

In an interview with CNN Turk on Thursday, Davutoglu said his country enjoys cordial and transparent relations with Iran, and is ready to help ease tensions between Iran and the US, particularly with respect to Tehran’s nuclear energy program.

Economic cooperation between Tehran and Ankara will not only serve the interests of both countries, but will also give fresh impetus to the economy in the region and contribute to regional peace and stability.

Commenting on the possible lifting of sanctions against Iran, the top Turkish official said Iran’s market is one of the most dynamic in Asia, and if it opens up to the international community, it will offer great opportunities to Turkey as a neighboring state.

Iran-Turkey trade has risen tenfold from USD 2.5 billion to USD 25 billion over the past decade, said Davutoglu, adding that the total removal of Iran sanctions would see the figure hit the USD 100 billion mark.

Earlier on September 30, Turkish President Abdullah Gul also said that a potential “softening process” in relations between Iran and the United States will be greatly beneficial to Turkey.

Gul said the US-led sanctions imposed on Tehran over its nuclear energy program had affected the Turkish economy as “our banks cannot make transactions with Iran.”

Following a meeting between Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany in New York over Tehran’s nuclear energy program on September 26, US Secretary of State John Kerry said Washington could begin removing the sanctions on Tehran within months if a “transparent process is in place” over the nuclear issue.

A day later, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani held a telephone conversation with his American counterpart Barack Obama in the first direct communication between an Iranian and a US president since Iran’s Islamic Revolution of 1979.

The landmark conversation between the two presidents mainly focused on Iran’s nuclear energy program.

The United States, Israel and some of their allies have repeatedly accused Iran of pursuing non-civilian objectives in its nuclear energy program, with the US and European Union using the claim as an excuse to impose illegal sanctions against Tehran. The bans come on top of four rounds of US-instigated UN Security Council sanctions against Iran under the same pretext.

Tehran has categorically rejected the allegation, arguing that as a signatory to the Non-Proliferation Treaty and a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency, it is entitled to develop nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.

By Press TV


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