ECO secretary general calls for removal of western sanctions against Iran

TEHRAN (FNA)- Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) Secretary-General Shamil Aleskerov termed the western sanctions against Iran as unfair, and called for the removal of all the unilateral embargoes against the country.

“In my opinion the sanctions imposed against Iran are unfair and they should be removed soon,” Aleskerov said.

He underlined that if the sanctions were removed, the grounds would be paved for further trade interactions among ECO member-states.

On Monday, Head of the Socialist Fraction and European Parliament’s Presiding Board member Hannes Swoboda also downplayed the effectiveness of the sanctions against Iran, and called for their gradual removal.

Swoboda pointed to the changes taken place in Iran since his last visit to the country, and said, “My last visit to Iran took place 12 years ago and the country has gone under abundant economic development and construction activities since then as if it had not been under any sanction… .”

The European lawmaker pointed to the sanctions against Iran, and said, “The sanctions should be removed and in my opinion this is possible in a step-by-step manner … and I hope this problem will be resolved soon.”

Swoboda pointed to the future of Iran-EU ties, and said, “We think that we can have very good relations in this regard and I hope that the sanctions will be completely removed in the near future and I want to say that the Socialist Party will defend this issue in the European Parliament.”

ECO is an intergovernmental regional organization established in 1985 by Iran, Pakistan and Turkey for the purpose of promoting economic, technical and cultural cooperation among the member states.

In 1992, the Organization was expanded to include seven new members, namely: the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, Republic of Azerbaijan, Republic of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Republic of Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Republic of Uzbekistan.

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.

Tehran stresses that the country has always pursued a civilian path to provide power to the growing number of Iranian population, whose fossil fuel would eventually run dry.

Despite the rules enshrined in the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) entitling every member state, including Iran, to the right of uranium enrichment, Tehran is now under four rounds of UN Security Council sanctions and the western embargos for turning down West’s calls to give up its right of uranium enrichment.

Tehran has dismissed West’s demands as politically tainted and illogical, stressing that sanctions and pressures merely consolidate Iranians’ national resolve to continue the path.

Tehran has repeatedly said that it considers its nuclear case closed as it has come clean of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)’s questions and suspicions about its past nuclear activities.

By Fars News Agency


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