- Title: Iran 'reserves judgement' on Trump until he takes office, Zarif
- Date: 18th January 2017
- Summary: DAVOS, SWITZERLAND (JANUARY 18, 2017) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF IRANIAN FOREIGN MINISTER, MOHAMMAD JAVAD ZARIF ARRIVING AT WORLD ECONOMIC FORUM (WEF) FOR DISCUSSION
- Embargoed: 1st February 2017 12:34
- Keywords: Iran WEF Mohammah Javad Sharif USA Syria
- Location: DAVOS, SWITZERLAND
- City: DAVOS, SWITZERLAND
- Country: Switzerland
- Topics: Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA0015ZLXY6F
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Iranian Foreign Minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Wednesday (January 18) he reserved judgement on President-elect Donald Trump's administration until they have taken office.
His comments were made at a discussion session at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
"I believe we need to wait for the administration to take office before we start passing judgement. Of course, we have very fundamental differences with the United States. We tried to resolve one issue. And that was not just with the United States but with the United States and five other countries and the European Union. And that has been working at least from our side pretty well. We have seen even the Obama administration not being very forthcoming from our perspective in implementing its side of the bargain," said Zarif.
Trump, who will take office on Friday (January 20), has called the July 2015 nuclear deal with Iran "the worst deal ever negotiated". He has threatened to either scrap the accord or seek a better deal.
Under Iran's settlement with the United States, France, Germany, Britain, Russia and China, Tehran agreed to shrink its nuclear programme to satisfy the powers that it could not be put to developing atomic bombs. In exchange, Iran received relief from sanctions, most of which were lifted in January 2016.
Zarif also said it was important to get Syrian to speak to each other at peace talks scheduled to take place in Kazakhstan.
"What we need to do at the international level is help the Syrians reach the stage of starting to talk to each other. And I believe the first step has been taken by Iran, Russia and Turkey. In bringing about a cessation of hostilities that has held for over a month and that is the best record that is available in the past five unfortunate years of Syrian conflict."
On Wednesday Syria's deputy foreign minister was quoted as saying that the participation of Saudi Arabia and Qatar in Syria talks will be discussed once they stop backing militancy, appearing to reject their attendance at the forthcoming peace talks.
Kazakhstan is due to host Syria peace talks next week called for by Russia, Iran and Turkey. Russia and Iran are Assad's two main allies. Turkey has backed the rebellion against Assad, as have Saudi Arabia and Qatar.
Zarif also said Iran and Saudi Arabia should be able to work together to help end conflicts in Syria and Yemen, after successfully cooperating over Lebanon last year, Iran's foreign minister said.
"I do not see any reason, Iran and Saudi Arabia cannot work together. Of course, we have a lot of grievances. We lost 460 people in the, in the stampede last year which was at least caused by negligence. We have seen a lot of rhetoric from Saudi Arabia, we have seen open support. We heard the interesting comments from my colleague the Foreign Minister of Saudi Arabia which considered Iran responsible for Daesh, which is the joke of the century. But we have heard this type of statement coming from Saudi Arabia. I think it doesn't help. I think we need to look at the realities of the region, we need to look at the fundamental reasons why our region is moving in this very seriously wrong direction," Zarif said.
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