(AP/Rod McGuirk)
Mohammad Javad Zarif

While warning Israel not to dare start with Iran, Zarif tried to depict the Islamic Republic as an innocent country bullied by the Jewish state and the US.

Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif warned Israel against getting “into serious trouble” by confronting Iran, and called on the US to stop threatening his country.

In an interview with the BBC‘s Chief International Correspondent Lyse Doucet, aired on Monday, Zarif also accused Washington of preparing new sanctions in an effort to provoke the Islamic Republic.

Responding to a question about possible moves by Israel and Saudi Arabia, Zarif said that “first of all, we’re not talking about the law of the jungle. We’re talking about international law, and according to international law, those options are a violation of international law.”

“I certainly hope that prudence will prevail because Iran is not an easy target,” Zarif stated.

“We’re not going to provoke anybody,” he continued. “We’re not going to instigate any hostility. We’ve never started hostility, and we’re not planning to do it. But we will defend ourselves.”

He cautioned the US, Israel and Saudi Arabia “not only to respect international law, but to be prudent enough not to get themselves in serious trouble” by confronting Iran militarily. “I do not believe that people looking at our history, people looking at our capabilities, will ever make the decision to engage in that misadventure.”

Earlier on Monday, in Germany for the 2017 Munich Security Conference, Zarif demanded that the US cease its threatening rhetoric against Iran.

“The Iranian people have shown that they will not tolerate language of threat. The US behavior is a sign of hostility with the Iranian people despite their false claims of friendship,” Zarif said, regarding the new sanctions leveled by President Donald Trump.

Iran Points to Israeli-Saudi Collaboration

Also on Monday, Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Qassemi blasted Saudi and Israeli officials for describing Iran as the world’s leading terrorist state.

“Many evidence and facts point to the coordination and collaboration between these two regimes on regional cases, and they both attempt to provoke the international atmosphere against our country as a means to compensate for their numerous failures and defeats,” Qassemi said in a statement, according to Iran’s Fars news agency.

“What is more deplorable is that the Zionist official has so clearly counted on the collaboration of a Muslim country for advancing its usual anti-Iranian policies,” he said, referring to remarks made by Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman and Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir, who criticized Iran at the Munich conference.

The State Department’s annual report on global terrorist activity stated that Iran “remains the foremost state sponsor of terrorism in 2015.”

By: Max Gelber, United with Israel