Ayatollah Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, chairman of the Expediency Council, said on Sunday that the West has adopted double standards in fighting terrorism and the issue has further complicated campaign against terrorism and eradicating it.
“There are contradictions in the West’s actions and words in fighting terrorism and the issue has complicated a real fight against terrorism,” he said during a meeting with former French Prime Minister Francois Fillon in Tehran.
Iran says some armed groups that the West has been supporting in Syria have connections with terrorist groups.
Rafsanjani said a “long and costly plan” is required to root out terrorism.
He also said that Saudi Arabia is very “vulnerable” in its war against Yemen and will have no choice but accepting a ceasefire.
Saudi Arabia launched war against Yemen in March 2015. Human rights organizations have accused Saudi Arabia of committing war crimes in Yemen.
Elsewhere in his remarks, Rafsanjani said “hegemony, colonialism, and terrorism” are the main regional problems.
Rafsanjani, a veteran politician who was Iran’s president from 1989 to 1997 for two consecutive terms, also called Israel a “cancerous tumor” and criticized the West’s silence over this regime’s crimes.
“We like the Middle East be free and peaceful and we are ready to cooperate with all the countries including France on this path,” he said.
For his part, Fillon said France attaches great importance to Iran’s status in the region and called for expansion of friendly ties between Tehran and Paris.
He also said crises in Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq, Yemen and Libya are dangerous to stability in the world.