Iran wants role in world crisis response

Sept. 16, 2013 at 10:20 AM
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TEHRAN, Sept. 16 (UPI) -- Iran can play an effective role in responding to global humanitarian crises, a minister said during talks with visiting U.N. relief chief Valerie Amos.

Amos, undersecretary-general for humanitarian affairs and U.N. emergency relief coordinator, wrapped up her three-day visit to Iran last weekend.

Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi said after meeting with Amos there were many crises in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan that needed more attention.

"We are ready for effective and extended cooperation with the United Nations to [provide] humanitarian assistance to the people of the region and believe that Iran has great potential in this regard," he was quoted by Iran's state-funded broadcaster Press TV as saying Sunday.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said he was willing to engage more openly with members of the international community. A former nuclear negotiator, he was sworn into office last month after running as a moderate in a presidential race this year.

Amos said Saturday the Iranian government could play an effective role in crisis response.

"Iran has a well-developed system for disaster preparedness and response and often shares their capacity and expertise when responding to emergencies in other countries," she said in a statement.

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