INTERVIEW - Iranian ambassador to Azerbaijan: No country has courage to attack Iran
Azerbaijan, Baku, Feb.10 / Trend T.Jafarov /
Thirty-three years after the Islamic revolution Iran achieved outstanding results, Iranian ambassador to Azerbaijan Mohammed Baqir Bahrami said in an interview with Trend on the eve of the 33rd anniversary of the Iranian Islamic revolution.
"Now, after 33 years, despite all difficulties, sanctions, 8-year war, terror and pressure, our country achieved great successes in its development. This development was achieved due to the unity of the nation and state under the leadership of firstly Imam Khomeini and then Ayatollah Khamenei," the ambassador said.
He said Iran at present is the world's third country in terms of growth pace. "Iran is the first in development of humanitarian and medical science. Iran is Asia's third country in scientific development, the world's third country in terms of transplantation of bone marrow, the world's fourth and the region's first in terms of transplantation of kidneys, the world's ten in terms of heart surgeries, the eighth in the aviation sphere, the tenth in the laser technology, 15th in terms of nanotechnologies, ninth in mathematical science and 10th on chemical science," Mr Bahrami said.
He noted the state budget of Iran exceeds $500 billion. Compared to last year, the budget increased, number of construction loans, which is an important indicator of the country's development, increased by 100 percent, progress was achieved in cultural, public, sports and other spheres, the Iranian diplomat noted.
"There was time when about 100,000 students studied at our universities, now over 3 million students get education. The Iranian nation has become stronger, more educated, and all this was happening along with pressure exerted on us. This nation, relying on their Islamic values, now sends to the outer space satellite of own manufacture, though once wasn't even able to produce barbed wire," Mr Bahrami said.
He said one of Iran's achievements in foreign policy is the fact that the Islamic revolution is an example for people under yoke. "Peoples of the world, Muslim countries, also see that it is possible to get rid of such regimes as Pahlavi regime and develop as Iran. They see they can decide their fate themselves," the ambassador said.
He noted Mohammad Reza Pahlavi transferred management of the country to the US and Israel. "These factors became the reason of the Iranian people's uprising and they under the leadership of Imam Khomeini fulfilled their religious duty, overthrew this slave regime and gained their real independence. Differences between the Iranian people and enemies of our people, leadership of the U.S. and Israel, who lost their profit in our country and the regions, is a natural question," the diplomat said.
Nuclear program and sanctions against Iran
Mr Bahrami said discussions about the Iranian nuclear program turned into a tool of implementing plots of the U.S. and Israel. "That's why nuclear program is not area of discussion for us," the ambassador said.
"The former USSR had thousands of nuclear warheads. Were these warheads able to stop the breakup of the USSR? Of course, not. Israel has over 200 nuclear warheads. Did these warheads help it win during 33-day war against small Shiite group of Lebanon? Did they help Israel during 22-day war against innocent people of Gaza? They lost and withdrew," the ambassador underscored.
He believes today the U.S. is also on the verge of collapse. "The capitalist economy and its dominance are coming to an end in the West and the United States and no longer meet their requirements. People of Europe and the U.S. are protesting. An example is the " Occupy Wall Street" movement," Mr Bahrami said.
The diplomat noted Iran doesn't want to produce an atomic bomb, because such weapons will not benefit anyone. "Did it benefit the U.S., Israel or the Soviet Union to be useful also for us?" he inquired. "In Iran's military doctrine there are no questions for the production of nuclear weapons and weapons of mass destruction. Iran is a member of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. But why does not Israel become a member of this treaty?" he said.
Iran wants to use nuclear technology for peaceful purposes. This technology is used in medicine, agriculture and other fields.
"Having nuclear technology is the right of all peoples, not just Iran. Our motto, which we follow, is "nuclear energy - for all, nuclear weapons and weapons of mass destruction -for none". We want to eliminate nuclear weapons and weapons of mass destruction all over the world," Mr Bahrami said.
Israel has 200 nuclear warheads, but nobody talks about it, it is not under pressure.
According to the Iranian diplomat, Iran considers production of peaceful nuclear energy its right, and will exercise this right. "The U.S. has lost its role in the world, and Europeans have so much internal problems, that it would be better if they deal with solution of their problems. Israel, too, is on the verge of extinction and will soon disappear. Iran for 33 years, from the first day since the beginning of the Islamic Revolution has faced sanctions. Iran has reached today's successes in condition of sanctions. The Iranian nation has achieved success by turning these sanctions into opportunities," Mr Bahrami said.
He said Europe had been buying about 18 percent of oil from Iran. "It wanted to use oil as a mean of pressure, but Iran refused to sell its oil to it. Today, the sanctions have lost their power of pressure. Sanctions did not affect Iran and did not affect the living conditions of the population. Today Iran's foreign exchange reserves exceed $100 billion," the ambassador said.
Possibility of armed intervention in Iran
Mr Bahrami said the United States attacked Iran even earlier. "They had been supporting Saddam Hussein's regime during its attack on Iran and the subsequent eight-year war. Weapons used in that war were provided by Europe, the U.S. and the USSR. They supplied Saddam. What they got from the result of this war is known to everybody," he said.
He noted today Iran has reached such a height in the military field, that "no country will have the courage to attack Iran."
"The suggestion that the U.S. or Israel may attack Iran is absolutely wrong. For example, if they want to ban us to sell oil, we will not allow even a drop of oil to pass through the Strait of Hormuz. Then you will see what happens and who wins. Iran conducted military exercises in the Strait of Hormuz, and showed its strength," the ambassador said.
The ambassador said that Iran is a peace-loving country. "Iran wants world peace, calm, justice and sincerity. But if Iran is attacked by any country, first of all, as a result of this attack, the country that attacks will disappear. Also any country that will support it in this attack will disappear. Why should the U.S. come to Iraq and Afghanistan from the other end of the world? What did they give to these countries? If before the U.S. attack on Afghanistan the production of narcotic drugs in this country was 2,000 tons, now it is 14,000 tons. Is accustoming the youth of regional countries to drugs their achievement?" Mr Bahrami said.