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Iran seeks enhanced cooperation with world: Academic

Iran's Leader Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei (L) and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani

Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei has formally endorsed Hassan Rouhani as president, paving the way for him to take office for a second term as the head of Iran’s 12th administration. During the Thursday ceremony, the Leader and Rouhani expressed the importance of expanding cooperation with other countries.

Press TV has asked Foad Izadi, a professor at the University of Tehran, and Michael Lane, president of the American Institute for Foreign Policy from Washington, to give their views on Iran’s enthusiasm to boost ties with other international players.

At the ceremony, Ayatollah Khamenei called for “extensive interactions with the world as well as broad relations with nations and governments.”

“Iran is open for business” and “is able and willing to cooperate” in international arena, Izadi said on Friday night.

“Being able to function in a proper manner internationally is one of the goals Mr. Rouhani has and this was emphasized by the country’s Leader,” because “Iran’s foreign policy is directed towards cooperation with other countries,” the academic explained.

He further said the fact that so many countries are sending representatives to take part in Rouhani’s second term swearing-in ceremony signals their readiness to cooperate with Iran.

In May, Rouhani won re-election in a landslide victory after securing 57 percent of the votes. Under Iran’s election law, the president-elect is required to gain the Leader’s official approval before being sworn in before the Parliament (Majlis).

A handout picture released by the official website of the Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei shows him (L) giving his official seal of approval during the swearing-in ceremony of President Hassan Rouhani (R) in Tehran on August 3, 2017. (Photo by AFP)

Elsewhere, Izadi pointed to US-Iran relations during Rouhani’s second term in office, saying that US President Donald Trump does not like the nuclear deal between Iran and six world powers; so, he is trying to find ways to blame Tehran for his own decision to get out from the international agreement.

“Optimism that President Rouhani had in his first four years [in office] about improving relations with the United States is all but gone,” because Washington has not stopped hostile policies against Tehran, he argued.

Lane, the other guest on the show, said the Iranian Leader and president are willing to enhance international cooperation.

“There was a remarkable degree of similarity between the Leader and President Rouhani’s addresses yesterday (Thursday), including the other things they are desired to expand relations with the world,” he noted.

The analyst also said that the presence of foreign officials in President Rouhani’s swearing-in ceremony is “an opportunity for the government of Iran to perhaps set a slightly different course than has been set.”

Iran and the United States have experienced a tense relationship since the victory of the Islamic Revolution in 1979, when the Iranian people succeeded in overthrowing a staunch ally of Washington and establishing the Islamic Republic.

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