Russia submitted to the United Nations a proposal that calls for collective security in the Persian Gulf amid rising tensions in the strategic region.
In two identical letters addressed to the UN Security Council and the General Assembly and obtained by Russia’s TASS news agency on Tuesday, Moscow underlined the need for an “effective” measure to boost stability in the Persian Gulf.
“In the current conditions, energetic and effective action is needed at an international and regional levels in the interests of improving and further stabilizing the situation in the Persian Gulf, overcoming the prolonged crisis stage and turning this sub-region to peace, good neighborly relations and sustainable development,” the letters read.
They also called on regional and extra-regional countries to engage in bilateral and multilateral talks aimed at forming a security system in the Persian Gulf.
“Practical work on launching the process of creating a security system in the Persian Gulf may be started by holding bilateral and multilateral consultations between interested parties, including countries both within the region and outside of it, UN Security Council, LAS (League of Arab States), OIC (Organization of Islamic Cooperation), [P] GCC (Persian Gulf Cooperation Council),” they added.
Moscow further expressed its readiness to cooperate with “all interested parties to implement this and other constructive proposals.”
The Russian Foreign Ministry unveiled last week its plan for collective security in the Persian Gulf, which envisages holding an international conference as well as establishing an organization on regional security and cooperation.
Recently, the US has taken a quasi-warlike posture against Iran and stepped up its provocative military moves in the Middle East, among them the June 20 incursion of an American spy drone into the Iranian borders.
The UK has also joined the US in fueling tensions with Iran by seizing a supertanker carrying Iranian oil in the Strait of Gibraltar on July 4 in an apparent act of “maritime piracy.”
Two weeks later, a British-flagged tanker failed to stop after hitting an Iranian fishing boat — as is required by international law — in the Strait of Hormuz. Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) impounded the ship after its unsafe maneuver.
Earlier this month, Marine General Joseph Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said the US was working to form a military coalition to protect commercial shipping off the coast of Iran and Yemen.
Former British foreign secretary Jeremy Hunt also unveiled plans for a European-led naval mission, which he said would be aimed at ensuring safe shipping through the Strait of Hormuz.
Meanwhile, Iran’s Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday a seven-member delegation from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) arrived in Tehran for maritime security talks.
“The 6th joint meeting will be held on Tuesday between a visiting seven-member delegation from the United Arab Emirates’ coast guard and Iranian officials in Tehran,” the ministry said in a statement carried by IRNA.
Issues from shared borders, visits by citizens of each nation, illegal entries, and maritime connections would be discussed.
The talks had been off since 2013, but the UAE wants to help calm the crisis and guard its reputation as a safe business hub.
Attacks on Saudi tankers and other vessels off the UAE coast in May increased tensions between the United States, Iran and Persian Gulf Arab states. Washington and its Arab allies blamed Iran for the attacks, but Tehran denied that.
The UAE tempered its reaction to the attacks, and has also scaled back its military presence in Yemen, where Saudi Arabia is involved in a war.
Iran has said it wants to improve relations with its regional rivals Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
“Iran has always given extreme importance to the security of the Persian Gulf and it needs cooperation among all Persian Gulf states,” said an Iranian official who asked not to be named.
Washington and Tehran are in a protracted standoff over Iran’s nuclear and missile programs, and its regional influence.
Washington has imposed and tightened sanctions on Iran’s oil exports after President Donald Trump pulled out of Iran’s 2015 deal with major powers, under which Tehran got access to world trade in return for some curbs on its nuclear program.
Press TV and Reuters contributed to this story.