Egypt, Iran identical views on combating terrorism
Egypt-Iran, Politics, 10/1/2001
Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak yesterday received Iranian Foreign Minister Kamal Kharazi and his accompanying delegation.
The meeting, during which Kharazi conveyed a message from Iranian President Mohamed Khatemi, focused mainly on the situation in the Middle East.
The talks reflected identity of views between Egypt and Iran on ways of tackling the crisis which has been created by the attacks against US targets in New York and Washington and the developments of the Palestinian cause.
Foreign Minister Ahmed Maher and Sayed Hady Khisro Shahi, the head of the Iranian interests section in Cairo, attended the meeting.
Khrazi said that Egypt and Iran believe that terrorism should not be measured by double standards.
These remarks were made at a press conference held after his talks with President Hosni Mubarak Sunday.
"The western countries are giving shelter to terrorists and calling at the same time for fighting terrorism," he pointed.
"Meanwhile the western countries are disregarding terrorism practiced by Israel and branding liberation movements fighting occupation as terrorist movements," he added.
Kharazi however, described his talks with President Mubarak as good and beneficial ,adding that they were held in an atmosphere of frankness and clarity.
Answering a question by Middle East News Agency on the future of Iranian Egyptian relations, Kharazi said that there are issues that should be settled. "Anyhow both countries are seeking the development of bilateral relations," he noted.
"The two governments should work together through joint dialogue to remove any obstacles standing in the way of developing these relations," he added.
Answering another question on reports by the CNN quoting him from Cairo yesterday as saying that Iran has joined the international alliance for fighting terrorism, Kharazi said that his country is supporting an international alliance under the UN, not any other form of cooperation which is not under the umbrella of the international organization.
Kharazi said that the US is not a fair party regarding the Middle East issues.
He wondered how can the US launch an international campaign against terrorism at a time when it supports Israeli terrorism.
The Iranian Foreign Minister warned the US and other countries against exploiting the opportunity to their own interests or the interests of their allies such as Israel.
He noted that Israel is trying to benefit from the situation after the attacks against the US.
Kharazi pointed out that everybody should think, under this sensitive state of affairs, about how to prevent confrontation between the Islamic and Western civilizations.
"Any wrong step will lead to clash of civilizations while on the contrary, any right step would help reach some sort of cooperation among civilizations to uproot terrorism," he noted.
"The major Islamic countries such as Egypt, Iran, Saudi Arabia and others should seek collectively ways of supporting the Islamic world stance at such a crucial time," he added.
Answering another question on Iran's stance in case the US should deal a military blow against any Arab state, Kharazi said that his country opposes military action by Washington against any Arab or Islamic country.
"The US should first prove with hard evidence who is behind terrorism before taking any measure," he added.
On obstacles facing restoration of relations between Egypt and Iran, Kharazi said that this assignment was given by the leaderships in Iran and Egypt to the Foreign Ministers to fulfill.
He said that the two countries have so far taken wide steps for achieving this end.
He said that the two countries have become closer to each other than before.
On his part, Foreign Minister Ahmed Maher said statements by Kharazi fully express the reality of the situation adding there were many points of agreement between the two countries.
He said that the meeting between President Mubarak and the Iranian Foreign Minister has deepened d'etente between the two countries.
He said that the two countries are seeking to develop their relations and will continue to take other steps in this context.
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