Planned trips by Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani to three European destinations, including France, has been cancelled following a spate of deadly terror attacks in the French capital, Paris.
“The president’s trips to Italy, the Vatican and France has been postponed to some other time in the light of the terrorist incidents in Paris,” Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif announced on Saturday.
On Friday, a string of coordinated attacks in and around Paris left at least 120 people dead and some 200 others injured. Some sources, however, put the number of those killed at 153.
A state of emergency has also been declared across Paris following the attacks, which were reportedly claimed by the Takfiri Daesh terrorist group.
Zarif offered condolences to the French government and nation over the tragic deaths and said, “We believe that the entire world should sympathize with the people of France and the victims of these terrorist acts today.”
The top Iranian diplomat said Iran is on the front line of the fight against terrorism, adding that the Islamic Republic believes “terrorism and extremism, one of whose sinister manifestations we witnessed today in France, should be fought against on the international level.”
“This threat is not exclusive to our region and the fight against it should not be limited to the region either,” Zarif stressed.
Earlier on Saturday, Rouhani himself expressed condolences to his French counterpart Francois Hollande over the terror attacks.
“In the name of the Iranian nation, itself a victim of the evil scourge of terrorism, I strongly condemn these inhumane crimes and condole with the bereaved French nation and government,” President Rouhani said in his message.
Rouhani was scheduled to set off for Rome in Italy later today at the head of a high-ranking delegation. He was also slated to pay a one-day visit to the Vatican on Sunday. The Iranian president was then set to address the UNESCO Leaders’ Forum as a special guest in Paris on November 16, and hold talks with Hollande in the French capital a day after that.