“Noour perspective Portugal is an important country at a political level, with decision-making power in the EU, and with a lot of influence to build bridges and relations in the Middle East and the world,” said in statements to Lusa Jalim Rahimi, president of the Parliamentary Group of Iran-Portugal friendship and member of the National Security and Foreign Policy Committee of the Iranian Islamic parliament.
“We have a diplomatic history with Portugal that dates back 500 years, from the oldest relations we have. The history of the Portuguese discoveries and navigation reached many peoples and for us it is an important history because we are also part of it”, stressed the official who heads a parliamentary delegation visiting Portugal since Tuesday.
The visit, which ends on Saturday, is the first visit abroad by an Iranian parliamentary friendship group following the restrictions caused by the pandemic.
“We have a very close relationship with Portugal in terms of international politics and we support each other when there is one of our candidates for an international position,” said Jalim Rahimi, who is now returning the visit made two years ago to Tehran by the Parliamentary Friendship Group Portugal -Iran, where he held meetings in parliament and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The group has already held four meetings in this visit, with the Portugal-Iran parliamentary friendship group chaired by PS deputy Luís Graça, with Fernando Negrão, vice president of the Assembly of the Republic “and where an official invitation to the president of the Ferro parliament was invited Rodrigues by the president of the Iranian parliament for an official visit, “and also with the president of Foreign Affairs and Portuguese Communities, deputy Sérgio Sousa Pinto.
“At this meeting I issued an official invitation by the chairman of the National Security and Foreign Policy Committee of the Iranian parliament to visit Iran. The situation in Afghanistan and other international issues were also declared,” he explained.
The last meeting brought together the delegation and the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs and Cooperation of the MNE, Francisco André, “an opportunity to exchange ideas on political and security issues, including Afghanistan and the issue of drug trafficking, and economic and bilateral relations” , needed the Iranian deputy.
The agenda does not include a meeting with the minister of Foreign Affairs, Augusto Santos Silva.
After underlining the importance given to this “friendship relationship”, the Iranian official maintained that Portuguese foreign policy “has the objective of creating ties between different peoples and does not interfere in the affairs of other countries”.
Portugal “has a balanced policy and supports multilateralism and not unilateralism in its foreign policy. Unlike dividing, it helps to build bridges and for us it is a very important point”, he considered.
Referring to economic relations, one of the themes highlighted in bilateral meetings, Jalim Rahimi recalled that in recent years “many opportunities” were lost in this economic area, but expressed optimism.
“Our political relationship was maintained, and one of the reasons for our visit was to relaunch and improve cooperation, as they existed before the sanctions”, in a reference to the sanctions that the United States re-imposed on Iran in 2018 after leaving Iran. nuclear agreement during Donald Trump’s presidency.
A scenario that, in his view, implies the permanence of the obstacles that Washington continues to impose on Europe so that it does business with Iran.
“We are clear, all parties have to return to the fulfillment of the agreement signed between all and we return to the previous situation of normalization. Europe is missing a great opportunity to negotiate with Iran and the sanctions are not even European”, he asserted, before ensure that his country “always fulfilled the commitments made in the nuclear agreement”, in a reference to the document signed in 2015 between Tehran and the great powers and where it is stipulated that the sanctions will be lifted if Tehran fulfills its obligations.
“Before the sanctions, Portugal had exported four times more to Iran compared to what our country exported to Portugal. Portugal is being sanctioned by the United States, suffering four times more as sanctions…”, he guaranteed, before justify the statement.
“We are very interested in importing several Portuguese products, such as meat, cork and other products, and due to the sanctions we cannot import and we are forced to look for other markets, in Asia, Latin America, and this affects Portuguese exports itself”.
In this perspective, it concluded with a piece of information aimed at justifying the need for a resumption of the exchange of products between the two countries.
“Trade relations between our two countries before the sanctions reached 25 million euros in 2019, and of that total 20 million were exports from Portugal”.
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