Iran warns US over interfering in Caucasus crisis

Iran Materials 25 August 2008 13:17 (UTC +04:00)

Iran warned the United States over interfering in the Caucasus crisis, ISNA news agency reported Monday.

"Powers outside the (Caucasus) region should not seek excuses for tensions and instability in the crisis area," ISNA quoted Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki as saying.

"Their destiny in the Caucasus would definitely not be different than the dilemma they have in other regions where they have already created a crisis," Mottaki added, referring to the US presence in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The Iranian chief diplomat however voiced concern that the crisis in South Ossetia would lead to outbreak of a new cold war era.

"The conflict between the two world powers (US and Russia) are indeed subject of concern," Mottaki said.

The minister further rejected reports that Russia might use the dispute over Iran's nuclear programmes - vetoing further sanctions against Tehran - as a pressure tool against the West in the current tensions over Georgia.

"We support peace and stability in the Caucasus area and the crisis over there should be tackled within its own place," Mottaki said.

"We however hope that wrong calculations and signals would not lead to renewed conflicts," he added.

Observers believe that Iran has already taken the side of Russia in the conflict as an increased US presence in the region - besides neighbouring Iraq and Afghanistan - would be a potential strategic danger for the Islamic state, dpa reported.