Zarif, Zanganeh offer condolences on passing of Iran OPEC governor

TEHRAN, May 16 (MNA) – Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh have offered commiserations on the passing of Iran’s OPEC Governor Hossein Kazempour Ardebili.

Kazempour Ardebili, 68, passed away in a Tehran hospital on Saturday two weeks after he slipped into a coma due to a brain haemorrhage.

In a message of condolence later on the day, Zanganeh wrote, "I can't believe that my compassionate friend, Hossein Kazempour Ardebili, has suddenly left this mortal world for eternal destiny and I be sitting in his grief. But death is both a reality and a truth from which sooner or later there is no escape and we can do nothing but surrender."

“Nearly 23 years of close cooperation with Kazempour puts me in a position where I can testify that he was a pious, cultivated, humble, very honorable man and a true and unwavering servant of the Iranian nation, loyal to the Islamic Republic and a lover of Iran for whom pride and progress of Iran was a constant concern.”

“He was a prominent diplomat who defended our national interests intelligently and vigorously in OPEC for more than three decades, in the most difficult circumstances and in spite of all adversity,” Zangeneh added.

Also, in a message, Foreign Minister Zarif expressed his condolences, saying, “The death of our dear brother, modest friend and honorable colleague, Hossein Kazempour Ardebili, a veteran and unique diplomat of our country, is a great loss for the diplomatic community.”

“This survivor of the June 28, 1981 bombing, he had always remained an astute and dignified defender of the national interests of the country either as an ambassador or minister or deputy minister and served as a reliable, exact and straightforward advisor to the Islamic Republic of Iran’s officials,” Zarif added.

A vital figure in Iran's international oil policy and a staunch aide of Zanganeh, Kazempour Ardebili was key in forming the Islamic Republic's position in the global oil arena, especially at the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).

He also had served as the country's deputy foreign minister and deputy oil minister in the 1980s.

MR/4926338

News Code 158745

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