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President in a meeting with Greek Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister:

Iran-EU cooperation will benefit region, world

President Hassan Rouhani said on Sunday that enhanced Iran-EU cooperation will benefit the region and the entire world.

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Sun 16 - March 2014 - 16:21

In a meeting with visiting Greek Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Evangelos Venizelos, the President indicated the resolve of the Islamic Republic of Iran to boost bilateral ties.
He described Iran-Greece ties as ancient and deep-rooted, saying that there are excellent capacities for developing economic cooperation.
Referring to the Greek periodical presidency over EU, President Rouhani said that nuclear issue should not be used as an excuse to create gap between Iran and the EU.
“I believe that traditional and historic Iran-EU ties which will benefit both sides should be rebuilt,” he said.
He said that mutual confidence building serves as cornerstone for promoting ties.
President Rouhani noted that of course, some misunderstandings between Iran and certain EU countries have already existed and still continue.
Both sides should make efforts to remove the current situation of non-confidence, he said.
Voicing Iran’s readiness to hold dialogue with EU on strategic issues, irrespective of economic, commercial and cultural ties, Dr.Rouhani said that energy, transit, regional stability and fighting terrorism, violence and extremism are the issues to be reviewed.
Referring to the endorsement of Iran’s proposal to UN General Assembly last September on combat against violence and extremism, the president said that Iran is fully prepared to have cooperation with EU in the fight against violence, terrorism and extremism in line with the UN resolution ‘World Against Violence and Extremism’.
President Rouhani noted that Iran is committed to implementing its undertaking in Geneva deal struck with the western governments last November, adding that Iran adheres to all the international conventions prohibiting weapons of mass destruction.
Iran considers building, stockpiling and using the WMDs as unlawful and immoral, he said, noting that the Iranian nation will never accept discrimination over its rights enshrined by Non-Proliferation Treaty and it considers itself entitled to peaceful nuclear technology.
Venizelos said for his part that Greece is keen on long-term and historical ties with Iran, saying that there are no restrictions in Iran-Greece ties.
He said that the Greek government is ready to promote economic cooperation in the fields of transportation, trade, pharmaceuticals and agriculture.
“Greece as the periodical president of EU will strive for promoting ties between Iran and the EU,” he said.
“We believe that Iran’s new administration can play a crucial role in confidence-building,” he said.
“I am at your service as Greek foreign minister and deputy prime minister and periodical president of EU to maintain political dialogue and I will report the outcome of my negotiations with Iranian officials to the EU,” he said.
Greece believes in Iran’s strategies and capabilities, he said.
On the humanitarian crisis in Syria, the Greek deputy prime minister said that no solution for Syrian crisis can be worked out in the absence of Iran.
“Greece will always serve as Iran’s gate to EU,” he said.

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- Foreign Meetings

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