Bahram Qassemi

EU after decreasing Iran’s self-sufficiency in defense: FM Spox

MNA – Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Ghasemi said that there are some European groups which seek to reduce Iran’s self-sufficiency in the defense sector.

Making the remarks in an exclusive interview with Mehr News Agency, he said, “unfortunately, there are circles in Europe that cannot easily tolerate a powerful and independent Iran, and they want to put pressure on us regarding missile and defensive issues in order to reduce Iran’s power and influence and to distance it from self-sufficiency. Of course, will never be realized.”

If Europeans are really worried about increasing the arms race in the region, they should pay more attention to some regional countries which have a huge defensive budget, he said, adding, “Iran’s defense budget is one of the lowest in the region.”

This double standard of European countries when dealing with Iran and some regional states which have enormous military spending is not acceptable highlighted the spokesman.

Elsewhere, he also talked about financial mechanism established by European countries to bypass US sanctions, saying that “we consider it as a first step taken by European countries and hope that they could implement this mechanism as soon as possible.”

Ghasemi also dismissed claims that this channel will just provide Iran with medicine and agricultural products since these products are not in US sanctions list.

Foreign Ministry Spokesman also talked about Iran’s joining FATF, saying, “most countries of the world have accepted this mechanism. And if Iran does not adopt required measured in this mechanism and in its internal regulations [regarding the fight against the financing of terrorism], it will not be able to organize most of its international trade relations.”

However, he added, it is unacceptable for other countries to set conditions and force Iran to accept regulations which are against general policies of the country.