TEHRAN, Apr. 25 (Press Shia Agency) – Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif said extremism could be wiped out through collective efforts and ancient civilizations.

Mohammad Javad Zarif made the remarks while speaking at the closing ceremony of the First Ministerial Conference of ‘Ancient Civilizations Forum’ in Athens, attended by 10 countries.

“We can eliminate extremism and violent measures through development of cooperation among participating countries in the Forum and using invaluable teachings of our rich civilizations.”

He highlighted that continuous holding of similar gatherings can play a major role in establishment of global peace, calm and security and preventing violence and extremism.

Also at the session, Greek Minister of Foreign Affairs Nikos Kotzias said the forum called for maintaining dialogue for elevation of global peace.

Kotzias also called for presence of other countries in the future events in the Forum both on official on observer status.

“The forum is scheduled to be held annually in the participating states, as cultural power is superior to the economic and military powers,” said the Greek official adding that major steps can be taken in line with upholding human community’s peace, stability and welfare by appreciating cultures characterized by ancient civilizations.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, for his part, said 10 participating countries in the event stressed the need for fighting the evil phenomenon of extremism.

He went on to note that ancient cultures can play a crucial role in establishing peace and calm and we are determined to do this through cooperation and dialogue.

Iraqi FM Ibrahim al-Jafari in turn said civilizations belong to humanity while ISIL is acting humanity by destroying historical monuments and committing crimes in Iraq and other states.

“Iraq possesses important icons of civilization which are unfortunately being destroyed by ISIL and their supporters,” stressed al-Jafari adding “as such, cooperation and consultation with civilized countries of the world can stop extremism and crimes of ISIL against humanity, and we welcome the holding of such conferences in Iraq.”

It was agreed at the end of the forum to hold next year’s ‘Ancient Civilizations Forum’ in Bolivia.

The two-day forum of ancient civilizations kicked off in Athens on Sunday. It was attended by foreign ministers from Iran, China, India, Italy and Egypt, among other participating states.