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Abe fails to broker dialogue between Iran, US

IANS  |  Tokyo 

Japanese during a two-day trip to sought to mediate a de-escalation in tensions between and and offer to dialogue between the two countries, but his bid was rejected by Iran, officials here said on Friday.

Abe, while urging to stick to an international nuclear accord inked in 2015 between six major powers, was keen to offer his help in mediating between and Washington, he had earlier said.

This was partly due to having friendly ties with both and Tehran, with this year marking and

Abe's visit to Iran, in fact, marked the first visit to be made by a Japanese since in 1978.

Nevertheless, his efforts to dialogue between and were rejected by the latter, reported citing informed sources, with Abe stating that the standoff in the region remains difficult.

The Japanese leader said, however, after his talks in Iran, that remained committed to working towards the achievement of peace and stability in the region and the de-escalation of tensions between the US and Iran, the here said.

During his trip, Abe also asked Iranian and Ayatollah to release US citizens being held in the country, Agency quoted a Japanese source as saying.

The request made by Abe, was reportedly on behalf of US Donald Trump, who was seeking to have at least four American nationals currently detained in Iran repatriated to Washington.

One of the Americans detained in Iran is a Navy veteran, who has been sentenced to 10 year's imprisonment.

The Japanese source here, according to media reports, said it is not yet known how Rouhani and Khamenei responded to Abe's request.

Japan's Taro Kono, who also visited Iran with Abe, meanwhile, spoke to US over the phone on Friday, with the pair agreeing they would closely cooperate on the situation in the

This included the attack the previous day on two near the Strait of Hormuz, one of which belonged to a Tokyo-based company, the here said.

Following Trump pulling the US out of the nuclear accord and restoring sanctions on Iran, Tehran said it planned to keep more enriched uranium, prompting Washington to send a carrier strike force, bombers and armed troops to the Gulf, as tensions mounted.

While Abe had geopolitical concerns in mind during his trip to Iran, resource-poor is the world's fourth-largest and relies on the for the majority of its

Hence, Japan also has a vested interest in the strategically important remaining open for the passage of tankers without the threat of attack for economic reasons as well.

--IANS

soni/

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, June 14 2019. 16:42 IST
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