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Let`s end unhealthy rivalries: Iranian president to US

Last Updated: Friday, September 20, 2013 - 23:04

Washington: Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has reached out to the American people by stating that the "age of blood feuds" has ended in an op-ed article published Friday in The Washington Post.

"International politics is no longer a zero-sum game but a multi-dimensional arena where cooperation and competition often occur simultaneously. Gone is the age of blood feuds, Rouhani wrote in his article.

The Iranian president stated that the US and Iran should work together to resolve pending issues, arguing that world leaders are expected to lead in turning threats into opportunities.

"We must work together to end the unhealthy rivalries and interferences that fuel violence and drive us apart.

"We must also pay attention to the issue of identity as a key driver of tension in, and beyond, the Middle East," Rouhani wrote.

He stated that a "constructive approach" to diplomacy shouldn`t undermine one`s rights and it should rather be based on equal footing and mutual respect.

"A constructive approach to diplomacy doesn’t mean relinquishing one’s rights. It means engaging with one’s counterparts, on the basis of equal footing and mutual respect, to address shared concerns and achieve shared objectives.

"In other words, win-win outcomes are not just favourable but also achievable. A zero-sum, Cold War mentality leads to everyone’s loss," he wrote.

"Sadly, unilateralism often continues to overshadow constructive approaches. Security is pursued at the expense of the insecurity of others, with disastrous consequences," he added.

Rouhani also made an attempt to pitch Iran`s argument for generating nuclear power and said the efforts were directed towards diversifying the energy resources of the country.

"To us, mastering the atomic fuel cycle and generating nuclear power is as much about diversifying our energy resources as it is about who Iranians are as a nation, our demand for dignity and respect and our consequent place in the world," he stated.

Rouhani said that in order to move beyond the impasses, both the countries needed to aim higher.

"To move beyond impasses, whether in relation to Syria, my country’s nuclear programme or its relations with the US, we need to aim higher.

"Rather than focusing on how to prevent things from getting worse, we need to think - and talk - about how to make things better. To do that, we all need to muster the courage to start conveying what we want - clearly, concisely and sincerely - and to back it up with the political will to take necessary action. This is the essence of my approach to constructive interaction," Rouhani said.


First Published: Friday, September 20, 2013 - 21:17
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