Iranian Foreign Minister Salehi: We Have Issued Warning
Turkish FM Ahmet Davutoglu (L) and his Iranian counterpart Ali Akbar Salehi (July 2011)
Iran's foreign minister Ali Akbar Salehi rejected the recent threats by Iranian military commanders and parliament deputies against Turkey and said their remarks were "personal" and did not reflect the official policy of the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran. He also said that those who had made such remarks had been "warned."
Turkey's Anatolia news agency reported that Salehi, had said that only he as foreign minister, the leader of the Islamic regime, and the president were the only officials who "could present the foreign policy views" of the country.
Anatolia and Reuters had both reported that Turkish foreign minister Ahmet Davutoglu had spoken on the phone with Salehi and conveyed his government's strong protest to the remarks that had recently been made by Iranian military and Majlis officials.
This Turkish complaint comes after a number of senior IRGC Revolutionary Guard commanders and a number of Majlis representatives had threatened that if Iran was attacked militarily by any Western country or Israel, NATO's missile defense shield in Turkey would be the first target of Iran's missile response.
Now, with Turkey's protests, Iran's foreign minister is downplaying the remarks by the country's military and political leaders. Salehi also told Anatolia that Iran and Turkey were not "rivals" but can have complaints over each other. He said relations between the two countries were based on "brotherhood and friendship." Referring to Iran's threats, he said, "We completely reject such views."
In his efforts to bring the tension between the two neighbors down, Salehi said that some 2 million Iranians visited Turkey every year and that he regularly held bilateral talks with his counterpart over regional issues. He called the differences between the two countries on some issues.
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