Donald Trump with Vladimir Putin. AP Photo/Evan Vucci and Mikhail Klimentyev/AP

Russia said Monday that it disagrees with US President Donald Trump’s claim that Iran is “the number one terrorist state,” and called for Tehran to join the international coalition against jihadist terrorism.

“We do not agree with this approach. Russia maintains good relations with Iran, “said Dmitri Peskov, a Kremlin spokesman.

Peskov said that “it is no secret” that, with regard to various international and regional issues, the positions of Moscow and Washington are “diametrically opposed”.

“However, this should not be an obstacle to maintain normal contacts and pragmatic relations between Russia and the US,” he said.

Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov was on Monday “convinced” that “Iran should be part of the common efforts” and be included in the coalition that will fight the Islamic State (EI) and the Nusra Front .

“The main problem in foreign policy is the threat of international terrorism personified mainly in the Islamic State,” Trump said.

“If that is so, then we must point out that Iran has never been involved in any ties with either the EI, the Nusra Front, or any other structure affiliated with those organizations or included in the list of UN terrorist groups “He said.

Lavrov stated that “Iran contributes to the struggle against the EI through armed detachments in Syrian territory in response to the request of the legitimate Syrian Government.”

After Iran carried out a ballistic missile test, Trump hardened economic sanctions against Iran on Friday and warned it “is playing with fire.”

Russia today apposed the sanctions and pointed out that “Tehran’s missile tests are not a violation of the agreement on Iran’s nuclear program, signed with the US and other world powers”.


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