Speaker: Crisis-Hit US cannot Afford to Attack Iran

A0485594.jpgTEHRAN (FNA)- The US is unlikely to attack Iran in the midst of the global economic crisis, a key Iranian official said in Bahrain last night.

It is already facing crippling financial woes and cannot afford to wage war, Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani said.

But Iran is unlikely to suffer much under the crisis, since its economy depends on its local resources, Larijani told a Press conference in Manama.

“There could be a slight effect on our exports and the oil sector,” he said.

Larijani accused the US and its allies of deliberately trying to divide Muslims in the region, to destabilize the area.

“For example, they keep coming up with stories that there are differences and problems between the Sunnis and Shiites in the region,” he said.

“There are no such problems between the two, they might have different opinions but not necessarily ones which could lead to clashes.

“The Americans love to exaggerate these little disagreements to create bigger ones, instead of leaving them as they should be, without any interference.

“There will be more cooperation in the region because we are all neighbors who share the same destiny.”

Larijani called for economic and security pacts between Iran and the other Persian Gulf countries, to give the region greater unity and strength.

He also lashed out at the security deal being negotiated between Baghdad and Washington, saying it impinged on Iraqi sovereignty.

Tehran would prefer Democrat presidential hopeful Barack Obama in the White House next year because he is “more flexible and rational”, he said.

Bahraini Foreign Minister Shaikh Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa last night held talks with Larijani.

During the meeting, the two sides reviewed bilateral ties and emphasized keenness to develop cooperation at the highest levels to achieve the aspirations of Iranian and Bahraini peoples.

Economic issues, mainly those relating to oil and gas, were discussed. The Middle East process was also reviewed with both sides agreeing on the need to resolve the Palestinian crisis including the establishment of a Palestinian state.

Shaikh Khalid stressed the need for a comprehensive Mideast peace settlement so as to enable the region to direct its potential to construction and development.

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