TEHRAN (Press Shia) – Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif has travelled to Sweden in a tour of Scandinavia that took him earlier to Finland, which holds the rotating presidency of the EU.
Zarif arrived in Stockholm on Monday night after visiting Helsinki.
In a post on his Twitter account, the top Iranian diplomat said he has held “fruitful meetings” with senior Finnish officials to discuss “what EU needs to do to save the JCPOA and protect its interest in freedom of navigation.”
Zarif said he has also shared ideas with the Finnish authorities on “Regional Dialogue Forum and non-aggression pact with CMI”. The Crisis Management Initiative is an independent Finnish peace broker.
In one of the meetings in Helsinki on Monday, Zarif held talks with Finland’s Minister for Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade Ville Skinnari.
In the gathering, the Finnish Minster described his country’s rotating presidency of the European Union as an opportunity for expansion of business and economic cooperation with Iran.
“Finland hopes that economic cooperation between the two countries would increase, and we deeply regret that the US has withdrawn from the JCPOA and that it has had consequences for the Iranian people’s lives,” he said.
“We are worried about the escalation of tensions; however, Finland’s role as the president of the European Union will be constructive in the reduction of tensions,” Ville Skinnari added.
“There are opportunities and grounds for mutual cooperation between the two countries, as in the ICT sector and academic cooperation, and the prospect of growing bilateral ties through poly-technical cooperation between Iran and Finland is bright,” he noted.
Zarif, in turn, said, “Finland, by holding the rotating presidency of the EU, can be helpful in implementing the nuclear deal and normalizing Iran’s trade relations. Also within the framework of the JCPOA, the businesspeople and economic activists have had higher expectations from Europe.”
“The US’ unilateral measures will not be limited to Iran, and have also targeted the other European partners. In order to counter the unilateral measures and mitigate the effects of US economic war against Iran, which affect people directly, there are approaches such as boosting bilateral trade and exercising multilateral interaction in the form of initiatives like the INSTEX,” he added.
Zarif is going to visit Norway after Sweden.