TEHRAN (Press Shia Agency) – Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said the most important achievement of the 1979 Islamic Revolution has been to give the Iranian people “a voice in domestic and foreign affairs”.

– Politics news –

“Our people believe—whether they agree with government policies or they don't—that they have a say in their own future,” Zarif told The New Yorker, according to a report published on Monday.

“The most important success (of the revolution) has been to give the people a voice in domestic and foreign affairs,” he said.

On the revolution’s failures, Zarif said, “If you compare the situation with what we had thought are our ideals, then we haven’t achieved much. But, if you compare the situation with the realities of the region today, then I think we’ve done pretty well. So, it depends on what you compare it with. Obviously, we had much higher ideals both in terms of internal as well as external relations.”

As to what the ideal Islamic Republic would look like, Zarif said the goal had been “a form of government that combines two elements—Islam and republicanism. Islam and democracy.”

“The ideal society would have been a society where disparities would be minimal,” he said, adding, “And where Iran would be able to make strides in terms of science and technology, based on the capabilities of its own people and working with the rest of the world.”

“We have made some achievements, but not to the extent that we had aspired,” he went on to say.

The remarks came as the Iranian people attended nationwide demonstrations on Monday in celebration of the 40th anniversary of the victory of the revolution which founded the Islamic Republic in the country.

The rallies began at 9 a.m. (local time) in more than 1,000 cities and towns as well as 10,000 villages across Iran.

The Iranian nation toppled the US-backed Pahlavi regime on February 11, 1979, ending the 2,500 years of monarchy in the country.

Every year Iranians mark the anniversary of their Islamic Revolution from February 1 to 11, known as the Ten-Day Fajr ceremonies. On February 1, 1979, Imam Khomeini returned home from years of exile in Iraq, Turkey, and France and led a historical revolution that overthrew the Pahlavi regime.