Japan PM seeking to meet with Iran pres. on ME tensions

MNA – Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Friday he plans to do everything he can to ease tension in the Middle East and wants to talk with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.

He said he is seeking to meet and talk with Rouhani on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly session that starts in September, Reuters reported.

“Peace and stability in the Middle East directly link to Japan’s national interest,” Abe told a news conference at the end of a three-day international conference on African development.

“I would like to work tenaciously, and play the best possible role to ease tensions in the Middle East.”

Tokyo-based Kyodo News had also said on Wednesday that the Japanese prime minister and the Iranian president are planning to meet while staying in New York.

The reported meeting will likely take place on the sidelines of the 74th session of the UN General Assembly, which will open on September 17. The first day of the high-level General Debate will be Tuesday, 24 September 2019, where the two Iranian and Japanese premiers are slated to take part.

The news comes two days after Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif met and held talks with Abe in Yokohama over bilateral ties as well as the regional developments.

During the meeting, Zarif reiterated that Iran is not seeking to increase tension but every country should be able to enjoy its rights under international law.

“As our president has said, we are not at all seeking heightened tensions,” Zarif said.