ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – Washington’s Middle East summit in Warsaw next month has gotten a cold reception.
Russia is not attending, neither is the European Union’s top diplomat. “We view with concern the United States’ continued attempts to promote its unilateral geopolitical interests through initiatives that are presented as the opinion of the international community,” Russia’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Tuesday, announcing Russia will not attend the summit. The US and Poland will co-host an international summit February 13-14 in Warsaw to “Promote a Future of Peace and Security in the Middle East.”Tehran has slammed it as an “anti-Iran circus.”Iran has not been invited.
Poland’s Foreign Minister Jacek Czaputowicz said this week that Tehran uses language that is “hard to accept” and so would negatively affect discussions at the conference. The meeting will address issues like terrorism, missile development, maritime security, and threats posed by proxy groups across the Middle East. Moscow said the summit is an “obvious attempt” to rally the global community against Iran to weaken the nuclear deal and “shift the international focus from Syria and Yemen to anti-Iran efforts.”Tehran summoned Poland’s chargé d’affaires to lodge a formal complaint.
After the meeting, the Polish Foreign Ministry issued a statement defending hosting the affair, saying, “the international community has the right to discuss various regional and global issues.”Polish Deputy Foreign Minister Maciej Lang traveled to Tehran on Monday in a bid to smooth relations. “For Poland this conference is not against any country,” he told AFP, saying he hopes he was able to clear up “misunderstandings” about the conference in his meeting with Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi. “Basically, the outcome of this conference is to find a process serving stability in the region,” said Lang.
“We believe the outcome will be positive.
Why should we suppose that relations with Iran would suffer?”The European Union’s foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini will also not attend.
The EU is leading efforts to save the Iran nuclear deal after Washington pulled out last May.