In this program, TOLOnews’ Lotfullah Najafizada has interviewed Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif about Afghanistan-Iran relations, Iran’s ties with the Taliban, the Afghan peace process, the Afghan refugees’ situation in Iran, and other current topics.
Below is the full transcript (the original is in Farsi).
Lotfullah Najafizada (LN): Hello. Afghan-Iran relations have had many ups and downs. A common history, culture, and language between the two nations have been overshadowed by politics, Afghanistan’s relations with the US, the Afghan refugees’ situation in Iran, and Iran’s relations with the Taliban.
Is Iran in favor of the Republic or it is a friend of the Taliban? What is Iran’s actual policy toward Afghanistan? Who is the real decision-maker of this policy?
Iran’s Quds Force, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, or the country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs?
Does Afghanistan’s friendship with anti-Iran America mean friendship with Iran or enmity? My guest on this program is Iran Foreign Minister Mr. Javad Zarif.
LN: Thank you for the opportunity.
Javad Zarif (JZ): In the name of God, I pass on my Salam to you and your dear viewers, our good brothers and sisters in Afghanistan.
LN: Mr. Zarif, is Afghanistan an occupied country–by the US?
JZ: We see Afghanistan as an independent country that has made many achievements in the areas of democracy, human rights, women’s rights, and the rights of minorities over the past 19 years, since the Bonn conference in 2001.
People’s participation to decide their fate is a reality in Afghanistan and we must recognize this reality. These are the events that happened in the past. We have always opposed the presence of foreign troops in the region.
LN: But the word occupation has been sometimes used by Iranian officials.