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Faezeh Hashemi Tells Rooz: Next Step, Face Meeting Between Heads of Iran and the US

By Fereshteh Ghazi, Rooz Online

Daughter of head of the Expediency Council Faezeh Hashemi tells Rooz that the telephone conversation between Hassan Rowhani and Barak Obama can result in a face-to-face meeting between the leaders of the two countries. In an exclusive interview with Rooz, Faezeh said that if the current course between the two countries did not suffer from ups and downs and progressed realistically, it can result in a meeting between the heads of the two countries.

Faezeh Hashemi on cover of Aseman magazine

Regarding the Death to US chants that have been taking place at the Friday congregation prayers since the 1979 revolution, Faezeh said that things could change in time and she said just like Death to Russia used to be chanted as well but was subsequently dropped.

Faezeh continued, "We cannot say that the relations that the US, Russia and Britain had with Iran were right and not imposing, that these relations did not result in the appropriation of Iran's interests and resources in the course of history. America is a new arrival compared to the other countries in this regard. But just as we have relations with the former colonialist powers we can have relations with the US as well. This was a taboo that has lasted for 35 years. Now the taboo is broken which is a positive and a good step I think. Take a look at our relations with Russia. Has it been a permanent and faithful friend? Have the benefits we given to Russia and others because of our problems with America and the West been little? Has Russia stood by us and not abandoned us on important issues? Look at the UN Security Council resolution against Iran where Russian also joined it. It did the same in other places too. It did not give us our S-300 missiles. So I do not understand why we should trust Russia while not having relations and solving problems in other areas that we can. I ask what events and conditions resulted in the breaking of this taboo now in this manner resulting in a telephone conversation between the heads. The problems that we are dealing with are not small. Especially in the last 8 years when we not only had no relations with the US, but our relations with the Europeans, the Arabs, countries in Asia Minor etc all have gotten worse and many areas reached a dead end and isolation, hurting our national interests and credibility. I think this has eventually been realized now that animosity with the world, with the exception of a few countries, cannot be the right way. One of these issues has been a lack of relations with the US. This is not in our national interests. Just as we succeeded in creating the right relations with other countries while protecting our national interest why can't we do the same with America? I do not believe in surrendering but believe in deals. In a deal both sides attain their interests. It is not right to think that we are weak against the US and that it can dominate us. If we have the right diplomacy and move in the right way we can most certainly advance in a mutually beneficial relationship with a win-win outcome."

This former Majlis deputy concluded that if a telephone conversation can take place between the two presidents and after the foreign ministers have met, this could result in a summit meeting of the two heads of government.

 Iranian President Hassan Rohani has asked two polling organizations to evaluate people's views on contacts with the United States (source Etamaad daily, Tehran)


On the question of why this had not happened earlier, she said, "In no other period have we had so many serious and critical issues, deep issues and deep crisis in our foreign relations and other areas."

On the nuclear issue, Ms Rafsanjani said, "We say that our nuclear program is peaceful and that we are not after nuclear weapons. So why can't we build confidence? During the last eight years the goal was not to build trust. It was to create tension and a new crisis every day. Now we want to show the world what we really are. We do not want to lie and are not after tension. We want to show reality and say that we are after peace and negotiations. I do not think this is a difficult task. It will take time, but it is possible. Was it not like that prior to the last eight years? Our tension with the world has been because of wrong relations that we had created, more so than the nuclear issue. Everybody used to say irrelevant things, things that were contrary to what the experts and specialists used to advise. The goal then was not to resolve the issues but the management of the world. What I mean is that most of our problems were because of mismanagement."

When asked about human rights and how relations with the US would impact this, she said, "We see countries that have a far worse human rights record that we do but they have not been subjected to sanctions. And they have good relations with the US and the West. Israel which has nuclear weapons has good relations with the West. These are mostly excuses. With a proper and rational foreign policy and a realistic management our domestic problems will be gradually resolved. Time will show many things."

The direct telephone conversation between the presidents of Iran and the US has been widely covered in Iran's domestic and the international media. Iranian politicians from across the spectrum have been commenting on it. For example, Ali Motahari, the principlist Majlis representative told Iran's Mehr news agency that some had the notion that if the US and Iran talked then that would be the end of the revolution. This is not the case and initially there were no plans to break relations with the US and it was the Americans who broke the relations. Talks by themselves are not banned. Prophet Mohammad too talked to Aboo Sofian prior to capturing Mecca.

"Talks do not require benefits and they are a means to get some advantage. There is no problem for us to be flexible when the enemy demonstrates flexibility so that we can attain our revolutionary goals," he said.

But another conservative Hamid Rasai, who is also a member of the Jebhe Paydari (the Steadfast Front that operates under ultra-conservative cleric Mesbah Yazdi) called the telephone conversation between Rowhani and Obama "an unpardonable mistake" made by Rowhani.

... Payvand News - 10/03/13 ... --

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