Updated in: 16 November 2019 - 14:23
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TEHRAN (defapress)- Iranian President Hassan Rouhani once again repeated that Tehran had no role in the massive drone attacks on Saudi oil installations, adding that all European leaders whom he met with in New York had told him that there was no proof to support accusations against Iran.
News ID: 78823
Publish Date: 27September 2019 - 22:40

No Evidence to Implicate Iran in Attacks on Saudi Oil Sites"The world knows that Yemeni forces have long-range missiles and drones... They have attacked other regions in Saudi Arabia frequently... Those who claim the attack was not from Yemen, must produce proof for their claim... [However,] the European leaders told me they had no evidence to show that Yemenis were not behind Saudi attack."

President Rouhani made the remarks on Thursday in New York where he was asked about the recent attacks on the facilities operated by the Saudi oil giant, Aramco, in the Eastern part of the country, and accusations leveled against Iran in this regard.

Speaking at a press conference, which marked the end of his participation in the 74th annual session of the UN General Assembly, he underlined that Iran has had no part in the attacks, emphasizing that "the Yemeni people have right to defend themselves against aggression”.

Asked about the possibility of any talks between Tehran and Washington, Iran's president said, "We want the US to remove the precondition for talking to Iran, including its 'maximum pressure' campaign against the Iranian nation" before any talks could be possible.

Rouhani emphasized that the US must first remove sanctions and end pressures against the Islamic Republic and adopt a logical policy, which would benefit both the people of the United States and the world; "then negotiation would be possible."

The Iranian president noted that by re-imposing sanctions on Iran and exerting maximum pressure on the country, "The US wanted to make the Iranian administration be held to blame for the ensuing problems."

He added that the American officials want to engage in negotiation with Iran at the same time that they are violating the country's rights and set preconditions.

"US must give up the 'maximum pressure' [policy] as a precondition [for talks with Iran] to prove that it is possible to negotiate with this administration and reach an agreement," Rouhani emphasized.

He added that the US has already failed in its effort to draw a wedge between the Iranian nation and government through its pressures and has only increased the gap between the Iranian nation and the US administration while stirring the highest degree of hate among Iranians.

"If the US gives up its precondition for talking to Iran, the situation will change and we can think about it."

Rouhani then referred to Washington's unilateral withdrawal from the landmark nuclear deal reached between Iran and five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany in 2015, which is officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

Iran's president said that it is not right for the US to sign an agreement, implement it for a few months and then seek pretext to withdraw from it, which also amounted to violation of the United Nations Security Council Resolution 2231, which upheld the Iran deal.

"After withdrawal of the US, other parties said they would be able to keep the JCPOA going and we listened to their plans as we wanted the JCPOA to survive," Rouhani explained, adding, however, that Europeans offered many plans first through their central banks and then through other financial systems, but none of them have become operational yet.

"Europe has proved its inability or lack of determination ... to keep the JCPOA going in practice... It wants for the nuclear deal to continue, but wants its cost to be undertaken by Iran."

Elsewhere in his remarks, the Iranian president said, "We have officially announced that R&D limitations [in Iran's nuclear program] have been lifted and we have informed the IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency) of this issue... We have not reduced or restricted IAEA's inspections. We have just reduced part of our commitments, including with regard to R&D in the third step. We have installed advanced centrifuges, which were supposed to be made operational a few years in the future, and when this chain is complete, it will be active and this is part of our R&D plans."

Several Yemeni drones targeted Aramco oil facilities in Abqaiq and Khurais last Saturday. The attacks shut down about 50 percent of the kingdom’s crude and gas production, and cut the state oil giant’s crude oil supply by around 5.7 million barrels per day. A return to normal production could take months, not weeks, according to reports.

Washington and Riyadh insist, without providing any reliable evidence, the Yemeni Houthi Ansarullah movement was incapable of launching such an elaborate assault, and accused Iran of being the perpetrator. France, Germany, and the UK have recently joined the US and Saudi Arabia in pinning the blame for the Yemeni raids on Tehran.

Iran, however, has rejected the accusations of involvement in the attack on Aramco, saying the US and Saudi Arabia's allegations that Tehran was behind the Yemeni drone attacks are out of desperation.

One of the reasons why Saudi Arabia and the US raise allegations against Iran is "their endangered prestige", Foreign Ministry Spokesman Seyed Abbas Mousavi stated, adding, "It is hard for Riyadh to accept that the Yemeni nation suddenly hits a heavy blow to Saudi Arabia after 5 years of resistance and gradually attains high defense capabilities empty-handed."

Russian and China, Tehran's two important allies, have recommended against rushing to conclusions about the party responsible for the strikes on the Riyadh-owned facilities. Japan noted that Tokyo has not seen any intelligence that shows Iran was involved in the incident.

The surprise attack has already caused oil prices to jump. Market and industry experts believe that the incident could stoke already-flaring tensions in the Middle East, driving crude prices higher amid growing fears of supply shortages. The consequences of the strikes led to uncertainty in the oil market as it’s unclear when the giant company can restore operations to normal.

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Tags: Rouhani ، Saudi ، defapress
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