June 14, 2019 / 9:27 AM / 4 days ago

UAE says Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif's credibility 'diminishing'

FILE PHOTO: Minister of State for Foreign Affairs for the United Arab Emirates, Anwar Gargash, speaks at an event at Chatham House in London, Britain July 17, 2017. REUTERS/Neil Hall

DUBAI (Reuters) - UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash said on Friday that Iranian Foreign Minister Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif’s credibility was “diminishing”.

“Every single day Iran’s Foreign Minister Zarif’s reference to team B becomes more farcical and his credibility diminishing,” Gargash tweeted. “Public relations is no real substitute to constructive policies. De-escalation in current situation requires wise actions not empty words.”

That triggered a response from Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi, who tweeted: “Those who lack credibility, legitimacy - even independence - and whose existence relies on buying security from westerners (who only view them as “milking cows”), are in no position to question the credibility of officials of the Islamic Republic of Iran.”

Zarif often uses “Team B” to refer to U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton and those in the administration and the Gulf region who share his hawkish stance towards Iran.

Gargash’s tweet seemed to be a reaction to one by Zarif, an hour earlier, saying: “Some misinterpretations necessitate a clarification: B_Team is sabotaging diplomacy (..) and covering up EconomicTerrorism by the U.S. against Iran.”

Reporting by Maher Chmaytelli and Parisa Hafezi; Editing by Mark Heinrich and Kevin Liffey

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