Rouhani urges world to protect Iran nuclear deal (UPDATE)

Baku, Azerbaijan, Sept. 20

By Farhad Daneshvar, Mehdi Sepahvand – Trend:

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani told the UN General Assembly (UNGA) that moderation is the inclination as well as the chosen path of the Iranian people.

"Four months ago, over 41 million people - constituting 73 percent of Iran’s total eligible voters - came to the polls in the country’s 12th presidential election and once again expressed confidence in my platform, which calls for moderation and respect for human rights and prosperity and economic revitalization at home, and constructive engagement around the world."

"Their vote manifested the maturity of the electorate in a society that has experienced free and democratic governance for only four decades. This was not merely a vote for a president, but a huge political investment by our population; a resilient people who truly constitute our most reliable asset."

"In its first term, while pursuing nuclear negotiations internationally, my government focused at home on the deliberation and articulation of citizens’ rights leading to the promulgation of "The Charter of Citizens’ Rights" and its issuance for implementation.

Adoption of this Charter conformed to the demands of a people who rose against dictatorial regimes, aspiring to restore their rights and human dignity 111 years ago in the Constitutional Revolution, and again in the Islamic Revolution 39 years ago."

"I declared before this August global assembly that moderation is the inclination as well as the chosen path of the great Iranian people. Moderation seeks neither isolation nor hegemony. It implies neither indifference, nor intransigence. The path of moderation is the path of peace; but a just and inclusive peace: not peace for one nation, and war and turmoil for others."

He further touched upon Iran’s role in fight against terrorism and said his country is on the frontlines of fight against terrorism.

"Today, we are on the frontlines of fighting terror and religious extremism in the Middle East; not for sectarian or ethnic reasons, but for an ethical, humanitarian and strategic one. Iran does not seek to restore its ancient empire, impose its official religion on others, or export its revolution through the force of arms."

Speaking about Iran’s nuclear deal with the world powers reached in 2015, he said the accord can become a new model for global interactions.

"The call of moderation is from a nation that has been committed to it. We are not preaching moderation, but practicing it. The JCPOA is a case in point."

"The deal is the outcome of two years of intensive multilateral negotiations, overwhelmingly applauded by the international community and endorsed by the [UN] Security Council as part of Resolution 2231. As such, it belongs to the international community in its entirety, and not to only one or two countries."

"The JCPOA can become a new model for global interactions – interactions based on mutual constructive engagement between all of us. We have opened our doors to engagement and cooperation. We have concluded scores of development agreements with advanced countries of both East and West."

The Iranian president assured the international community that his country will not be the first to walk away from the nuclear deal.

"I declare before you that the Islamic Republic of Iran will not be the first country to violate the agreement, but it will respond decisively and resolutely to its violation by any party."

"It will be a great pity if this agreement were to be destroyed by rogue newcomers to the world of politics: the world will have lost a great opportunity. But such unfortunate behavior will never impede Iran’s course of progress and advancement," said Hassan Rouhani.

"By violating its international commitments, the new US administration only destroys its own credibility and undermines international confidence in negotiating with it or accepting its word or promise."

"We consider dialogue and negotiations based on a positive-sum paradigm as the only path towards the resolution of global and regional crises."

Rouhani underscored that the defense capabilities of the Islamic Republic of Iran, including its missiles, "are solely defensive deterrents for the maintenance of regional peace and stability and the prevention of adventurist tendencies of irrational aspirants."

"We cannot forget that civilians in many of our cities became the targets of long-range missile attacks by Saddam Hussein during his eight-year war of aggression against us. We will never allow our people to become victims of such catastrophic delusions again."

President Rouhani called on the world to cooperate with Iran in enhancing its economy.

"Iran, enjoying the world’s largest gas and oil reserves, is prepared to engage in long-term cooperation to advance global energy security. We are eager to expand international transit corridors through joint ventures in sea, rail and road infrastructure projects."

"Our achievements in enhancing economic infrastructures in the fields of a nationwide gas pipeline, national electricity grid, and rail and road transport, have made it possible for various industries to produce at a lower cost, with easy access to national and regional markets," said Rouhani.

"With the current conducive legal environment, many delegations of foreign investors have come to Iran, leading to an ever-increasing number of investments, joint ventures and financing agreements in various fields."

Rouhani concluded his address with a call to the international community to contribute to creating a world against violence and extremism by turning the discourse of imposition, unilateralism, intimidation and war into the logic of dialogue, synergy and peace.

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