'Iran generalizing its political authority to intl. economic transactions'

TEHRAN, Jun. 22 (MNA) – Referring to the arrival of Iran's 6th cargo ship in Venezuela, Iran’s former ambassador to the OPEC Mohammad Ali Khatibi says the Islamic Republic is generalizing its political authority into the economic field.

In the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, oil is losing its significance as a strategic good in the international market as well as its pivotal role in determining the economic and political status quo and international relations of both oil producers and consumers.

As a major oil producer, Iran used to have an oil-reliant economy. But thanks to US sanctions, the country learned much earlier than Covid-19 outburst how to shift into applying non-oil economic policies.

Less shocked and influenced by the lethal virus' outbreak on the global oil market, Iran has started to try alternative financial foreign income to compensate for its sanctioned oil revenues.

Recently, the country commenced the swap of goods for gold with Venezuela, as a practical method to open a new gateway for developing its foreign trade under both US sanctions and the coronavirus outbreak. Iran could successfully deliver five fuel cargoes to Venezuela, the act which questioned the US hegemony and transmitted the message that the US can no longer see other nations as its subordinates. 

Caption: Venezuelan Army escorted fuel tankers from Iran despite the US sanctions.

The Islamic Republic continued its international transactions by dispatching its sixth ship, 'Golsan' to Venezuela despite Washington’s threats against both nations.

Mehr news conducted an interview with Mohammad Ali Khatibi, Iran’s former ambassador to the OPEC, elaborated on various aspects of Iran-Venezuela's recent economic transactions.

Mohammad Ali Khatibi

Khatibi, in his earlier remarks, suggested all countries sanctioned by the US to get united and establish a club of sanctioned countries to ease international trade among themselves. "The increase in the number of countries sanctioned by the United States has provided a better capacity to create alternative solutions to supply demands," he said, "sanctioned countries can get united to established an organized cooperation system against the US sanctions to supply a great number of their requirements."

In his latest interview with the Mehr news on June 21, Khatibi was asked about the geopolitical results of Iran-Venezuela's recent swap on international relations and the energy market.

The energy expert said, "As you know the main cause of imposing sanctions on a country is forcing it to act upon some specific desires. The US imposes embargoes to gain some interests, as well."

"However, the sanctioned countries can get united to meet each other's demands under the sanctions. It is their right to take advantage of their legal rights of having their favorite economic transactions with other countries and a third country, i.e. the one who imposes sanctions, cannot prevent them. This is a legal measure for the sanctioned countries to take. The US is a country but not an international body and there is no right for it to bully other countries."

"All countries act upon their own interests. There are some countries that have tight relations with the US and cannot put their interests at risk by having economic transactions with countries under US sanctions. But since the number of countries sanctioned by America are increasing, it seems practical for them to initiate their own network of financial transactions to foil the sanctions," he added.

Elaborating on his view over the taken steps by Tehran and Caracas as an anti-US unilateralist approach, he referred back to President Obama's view over the practicality of sanctions.

In case of any probable more sanctions for Iran, the country can handle the situation.

Being asked about the causes for Iran-US talks and endorsement of the JCPOA, the US former President Barak Obama admitted that sanctions usually lose their effect incrementally and there will be a point that they collapse. As he said, there is a 'practicality period' for sanctions and the sanctioned country can find ways to circumvent them after a while. Experience shows that US sanctions have lost their effectiveness on Iran and the Islamic Republic has learned how to survive the toughest US pressures," he said.  

"In case of any probable more sanctions for Iran, the country can handle the situation," Khatibi underlined.

He went on to say that "in the past talks with the US and hammering the JPOA, the Rouhani administration used to apply a cooperative approach. I do believe that the Rouhani administration should make a shift in its approach in the future talks if there will be any."

"Now, Iran should not be as optimistic as before since the situation is totally different. The incumbent Iranian administration should hold future talks more prudently than before, with a higher level of self-confidence in a bid to guarantee Iran's interests."

Iran’s former ambassador to the OPEC, elsewhere discussed a new aspect of Iran's international activities; i.e. how the country is improving its international political authority to international economic transactions.

"Today, the world is aware of Iran's political authority," he said, "The Islamic Republic has proven its authority to the world and the world believes in it."

"About the case of dispatching oil tanker to Caracas, as we saw, no country could stand against Iran's legal right of having international transactions," Khatibi added.

He further explained that "Iran proved its authority to the world when it hit US airbase in Iraq or when it seized the British-flagged tanker Stena Impero, too."

Caption: The Ain al-Asad military base in Iraq’s Anbar province was targeted by IRGC airstrikes on January 8, 2020. The Iranian body launched the missiles as revenge for the US drone strike that assassinated Lt. Gen. Qassem Soleimani on January 3.

Caption: In late July 2019, Iran released footage of a UK-flagged oil tanker which was captured by IRGC naval forces after breaching international maritime law.

Iran could successfully use its authority in its recent transactions with Venezuela and that was a new gateway for the Islamic Republic.

"Iran's enemies have look for some interests in the Persian Gulf and Iran's readiness for deterring probable foreign threats makes them retreat." 

"Why shouldn't Iran have the chance to use its political authority in its foreign trade to provide its own interests?" he asked.

"Iran could successfully use its authority in its recent transactions with Venezuela and that was a new gateway for the Islamic Republic," he added.

Interview By: Haniyeh Sadat Jafariyeh

News Code 160016


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