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UPDATE 1-Iran sees no arms buying spree as it expects U.N. embargo to end

18 Oct 2020 / 10:08 H.

    (Adds Zarif quotes, background)

    DUBAI, Oct 18 (Reuters) - Iran said it was self-reliant in its defense and had no need to go on a weapons buying spree as a United Nations conventional arms embargo was due to expire on Sunday despite strong U.S. opposition.

    "Iran's defense doctrine is premised on strong reliance on its people and indigenous capabilities ... Unconventional arms, weapons of mass destruction and a buying spree of conventional arms have no place in Iran's defense doctrine," said a Foreign Ministry statement carried by state media.

    The 2007 Security Council arms embargo on Iran was due to expire on Sunday, as agreed to under the 2015 nuclear deal among Iran, Russia, China, Germany, Britain, France and the United States that sought to prevent Tehran from developing nuclear weapons in return for economic sanctions relief.

    Tensions between Washington and Tehran have soared since U.S. President Donald Trump in 2018 unilaterally withdrew from the deal, however.

    In August, the Trump administration triggered a process aimed at restoring all U.N. sanctions, after the U.N. Security Council rejected a U.S. bid to extend the conventional arms embargo on the country.

    "Today's normalization of Iran's defense cooperation with the world is a win for the cause of multilateralism and peace and security in our region," Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Twitter. (Reporting by Dubai newsroom; Editing by Daniel Wallis and Sonya Hepinstall)

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