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Iran supports diplomatic efforts aimed at peaceful settlement of Ukraine conflict: President Raeisi

Iranian President Ebrahim Raeisi addresses a cabinet session in Tehran on February 27, 2022. (Photo by

Iranian President Ebrahim Raeisi says the Islamic Republic welcomes any diplomatic effort aimed at peaceful settlement of the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine.

"The Islamic Republic of Iran supports any effort that would lead to peaceful settlement of the [ongoing] conflict in Ukraine and is ready to play a role to help restore peace in any possible manner," Raeisi said while addressing a cabinet session in Tehran on Sunday.

"Based on the fundamental principles of its foreign policy, the Islamic Republic of Iran opposes both hegemony and submission to hegemony, and gives its backing to the right to all nations to self-determination," Iran's chief executive said.

Raeisi said while emphasizing the need to protect territorial integrity and the national sovereignty of all countries, “the Islamic Republic of Iran understands security concerns arising from several decades of NATO’s expansionism.”

Iran's president added, "We strongly believe that diplomacy and sincere adherence to international obligations by all parties provide the sole lasting and just way out of the current situation."

The Iranian president also stressed that all parties to the Ukraine conflict must be serious about protecting the lives and property of citizens and civilians and observing the principles of international and humanitarian law.

In a televised speech early on Thursday, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced a "special military operation" aimed at “demilitarization” of the Donetsk and Lugansk Republics in eastern Ukraine, collectively known as Donbass.

The two regions broke away from Ukraine in 2014 after refusing to recognize a Western-backed Ukrainian government that had overthrown a democratically-elected Russia-friendly administration.

Announcing the operation, Putin said the mission was aimed at “defending people who for eight years are suffering persecution and genocide by the Kiev regime.”

The United Nations Refugee Agency says more than 120,000 Ukrainians have left the country since Russia started the military campaign against Ukraine on February 24.

In a late Thursday phone call with his Russian counterpart, the Iranian president said the continued eastward expansion of NATO threatens stability and security of independent countries and is a source of tension.

Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian also told his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov on Friday that he hopes the Russian-Ukrainian crisis would be settled through political channels.

"It is our serious priority to ensure security and health of Iranian citizens living in Ukraine and we expect that grounds will be prepared for their safe exit," Amir-Abdollahian added.

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