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Zarif: US isolated in the world, failed to create coalition in Gulf

Published: Updated:

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Monday that the United States was isolated in the world and was unable to create a coalition with its allies in the Arabian Gulf because they are too “ashamed.”

“The US is standing alone in the world..it cannot create a coalition (in the Gulf),” he told a news conference.

The United States wanted to deprive Iran of its rights, he said, and its sanctioning of the foreign minister is a failure in diplomacy.

Zarif added that the US is responsible for the tension in the Arabian Gulf, saying that its presence in the region has caused “misery.”

The foreign minister also said that Britain’s seizure of an Iranian oil tanker last month was “piracy.” He added that the ship was not destined for Syria as the UK had claimed.

Zarif told a news conference that Iran is responsible for the safety and security of the Arabian Gulf.

He said that Britain has been complicit in the US’ “economic terrorism” against Iran, and warned that Iran will never “close [its] eyes” on maritime offenses in the Gulf.

Nuclear deal

Iran will leave its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Monday, if Tehran’s interests were not protected by other parties to the pact.

“Iran will leave its 2015 nuclear deal with powers if necessary,” Zarif told a news conference broadcast live on state TV, “calling on Europeans to accelerate their efforts to shield Iran’s economy from US sanctions.”

Asked on Monday about reports that he had been invited to meet Trump in the White House, Zarif said he had turned it down despite the threat of sanctions against him.

“I was told in New York I would be sanctioned in two week unless I accepted that offer, which fortunately I did not,” said the Iranian minister.

The New Yorker magazine reported on Friday that Senator Rand Paul met Zarif in the US on July 15 and had Trump’s blessing when he extended an invitation to the Iranian minister to go to the White House.

The United States imposed sanctions against Zarif on Wednesday, targeting any assets he has in America and squeezing his ability to function as a globe-trotting diplomat.