SHAFAQNA – In an exclusive interview with Shafaqna, Ayatollah Rafsanjani declared that “Of course currently the situation in Saudi Arabia is not good. Meaning, the policies that the new rulers have adopted are not wise. But war is not the way …”
Question: Currently there are talks of tension between governments of Iran and Saudi Arabia, considering that you have always maintained a good relation with Arab countries, do you think the relation between the two countries can be improved or not?
Ayatollah Rafsanjani: If we want to do it, it is completely possible. Of course it cannot be done by one side. For instance we are ready but they do not have the conditions to accept or for a political or regional reason they do not accept or we do not want to. But in my opinion is completely possible. In recent nuclear talks we showed our logic, everybody saw that we are logical people.
Various international delegations are waiting to come to Iran to establish relation with us, Arab countries are not behind and we can work better with them. Of course currently the situation in Saudi Arabia is not good. Meaning, the policies that the new rulers have adopted are not wise. But war is not the way, the way is that we must talk logically and assure them that we are not nuclear military so that they do not fear us, we do not intend to use our weapons against anyone.
Question: What is your opinion regarding breakdown or Balkanisation of countries in the Middle East? What do you think about extremism in the region and the differences between Shias and Sunnis?
Ayatollah Rafsanjani: Currently the problem of terrorism has been connected into Shia and sunni belief. Terrorism in our country is weak but exists in the region. At the present time, those who commit terrorism acts are mainly Wahhabis. They define Islam differently especially Da’esh who consider Shias as Kafir. Of course Taliban was and still is the same. They are also the problem. Currently, the problem of terrorism is shifting from regional to becoming international.
The issue of the breakdown (of countries) is the wish of the foreigners. They do not want a powerful country to exist in our region. Some wish to breakdown, Iran, Iraq and Syria into smaller countries and keep them confronting each other. Breakdown is not easy and problems cannot be solved by it.