No end to Middle East strife without Iran: Rouhani

No end to Middle East strife without Iran: Rouhani
# 12 February 2015 03:32 (UTC +04:00)

Baku-APA. Iran's president said Wednesday that the world needs its help to stabilise a troubled Middle East, in remarks pointing to the wider ramifications of a deal over Tehran's disputed nuclear programme, APA reports quoting AFP.

In a live televised speech marking the anniversary of the 1979 Islamic revolution, Hassan Rouhani implicitly linked ongoing nuclear talks with world powers to resolving bloody conflicts in Iraq and Syria.

Significant gaps remain between Iran and the United States and other leading nations on specific measures to end a 12-year standoff on the nuclear issue, but both sides are pushing for a deal.

And although Iranian and US officials have said the turmoil gripping the Middle East falls outside the remit of negotiations, analysts say both governments acknowledge an agreement could have a broader impact.

"If there is going to be peace and stability in the region, and terrorism is to be uprooted, there is no other way than with the presence of the Islamic Republic of Iran," Rouhani said.

A huge crowd filled Azadi (Freedom) Square in Tehran to hear the Iranian president commemorate the tumultuous events that ousted Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi from power 36 years ago.

The fall of the shah was followed months later by the storming of the US embassy in Tehran by Islamist students, culminating in American diplomats being held prisoner.

The crisis, which lasted 444 days, caused US-Iranian diplomatic relations to be severed and it ushered in deep distrust which persists to this day.

This year's anniversary was the second to coincide with an intense diplomatic effort to end the nuclear deadlock but the first since jihadists of the Islamic State group seized large parts of Iraq and Syrian territory.