TEHRAN (Press Shia) – Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) Ali Shamkhani cautioned against Washington's plots to dominate the Middle East and said the US is seeking to destabilize the region to increase its military presence there.

“As the biggest exporter of arms and ammunition, the US dominates more than a third of the world’s arms market,” Shamkhani said, addressing the 9th International Meeting of High Representatives for Security Issues in the Russian resort city of Sochi on Wednesday.

More than 70 percent of the US arms are sold to the Middle East, he said, adding that the amount of US arms exports has doubled over the past 10 years, making the region “a gunpowder storehouse”.

“Given such a lucrative market, would the US have even a willingness to end wars? Would it (the US) had been able to sell more than $100 billion of weapons to Saudi Arabia without portraying Iran as a security threat?” Shamkhani noted.

“It is natural that all responses (to the above questions) are negative, because the US’s definitive policy is to manage insecurity and destabilize the region to strengthen its presence, develop its military bases, sell (more) weapons and interfere in the region's affairs,” he noted.

The remarks came as the Middle East has been plagued with conflicts and Takfiri terrorist groups like Daesh (also known as ISIS or ISIL), which are believed to have been created and supported by the US and some regional countries.

Countries like Iraq and Syria have been gripped by insurgency and terrorism, while Yemen has been suffering from a brutal aggression by a Saudi-led coalition for the past three years.

Shamkhani is in Russia to attend the 9th International Meeting of High Representatives for Security Issues, which opened in Sochi on Wednesday and will last until Thursday.

During his trip, Shamkhani will also hold bilateral and multilateral talks with senior officials from other countries participating in the conference.