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Zarif: US unilateralism existential threat to entire world

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (C, as seen in video screen) speaks during the 16th ministerial meeting of the Asia Cooperation Dialog (ACD) in the Qatari capital, Doha, on May 1, 2019. (Photo by IRNA)

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif says American unilateralism poses an “existential threat” to the whole world.

Addressing the 16th ministerial meeting of the Asia Cooperation Dialog (ACD) in the Qatari capital, Doha, on Wednesday, Foreign Minister Zarif said all nations would have to deal with that threat at one time or another.

“We need to collectively address the alarming unilateralism of the current US administration. The imposition of the will of a single power over all other nations is an existential threat — sooner or later — for everyone,” Zarif said.

He said the “short-sighted adventures and the aggressive unilateralism of the current US administration” was the primary source of crises that had come to afflict the entire Asia, most notably its western part, and the Persian Gulf region.

‘Unilateralism to lead to rule of jungle’

The Iranian foreign minister said the “rising and aggressive unilateralist wave” threatened to affect the entire world, in which case, he said, the rule of jungle would quickly replace the rule of law.

The administration of US President Donald Trump faces international criticism for pursuing a self-centered approach to international affairs.

Under Trump, Washington has unilaterally pulled out of bilateral or multilateral agreements, including the 2016 Paris Agreement on climate change, a 2015 nuclear deal with Iran and other nations, and the Cold War-era Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) with Russia.

Following its withdrawal from the Iran deal, the US also imposed sanctions both against Iran and the countries that would do business with it.

Zarif said that in order to stop the unilateral US policies from coming to govern the whole world, Asian countries had to join forces in pursuit of multilateralism.

‘Iran a stalwart of dialog’

He also reasserted Iran’s commitment to dialog amid Washington’s actions targeting global inclusion and interaction.

“Let me assure you that in the relentless pursuit of dialog and multilateralism, Iran will always be a steadfast partner,” he said.

‘US in no position to blacklist others’

Separately, he addressed reporters on the sidelines of the conference, lambasting a US plan to designate the Egyptian movement of Muslim Brotherhood a “terrorist organization.”

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, a close ally of Trump’s, has already banned the country’s biggest opposition movement, and his regime is accused of killing hundreds of its members and supporters in order to cement its grip on power.

“The US,” Zarif said, “is not in a position to [...] start naming others as terror organizations and we reject any attempt by the US in this regard.”

The US recently labeled Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) a “foreign terrorist organization.”

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