The Iranian president made the remakes while meeting his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly meeting in New York on Monday.
Rouhani’s ramarks began with harsh words for Saudi Arabia, site of a stampede that killed hundreds of Muslim pilgrims – including 136 Iranians – last week at one of Islam’s holiest sites.
In his speech before the gathering of world leaders – which was largely tame, despite a few bellicose rhetoric – Hassan Rouhani indicated that the landmark diplomatic breakthrough this summer could serve as the beginning of a new era for Iran.
“[Russian President Vladimir] Putin told me recently that he wants to be more active in fighting ISIS“, Rouhani said, but added that there’s “no coalition” between Tehran and Moscow against the Islamic State.
The five countries that form the permanent U.N. Security Council – the United States, United Kingdom, France, Russian Federation and China – and Germany negotiated the deal with Iran.
David Cameron is to hold face-to-face talks with Iranian president Hasan Rouhani in a fresh bid to revive the stalled Syrian peace process.
British officials have increasingly departed from United States of America and Western policy of not talking to Assad, underlining a rift between Europe’s main powers over the role of the Syrian leader after more than four years of civil war.
Instead, the focus at the General Assembly has turned to other issues, particularly the war in Syria.
Iran expects about 29bn of funds to be unfrozen and repatriated to its central bank by January 2016 at the latest as economic sanctions are eased after July’s nuclear deal, according to Gholamali Kamyab, vice governor for foreign exchange affairs at the bank.
Warning that Middle East turmoil could spread to other parts of world, he said Iran was “prepared to assist in the eradication of terrorism” and “to help bring about democracy in Syria as well as Yemen”.
Failing to address the problem of Islamic State properly and forcing out the government would result in the group taking control of Damascus, Rouhani said. In his speech, he singled out the Israelis for their nuclear program, which he said inhibits creation of a nuclear weapons-free zone in the Middle East. He also criticized Israel for its “oppression of the nation of Palestine”, which Rouhani said had also fed the growth of terrorism. The agreement has come under scrutiny by hard-liners in both countries.