Ali Akbar Velayati, who advises the Leader on international affairs, made the remarks in an exclusive interview with Lebanon’s al-Mayadeen news channel, which was published on Monday.
Saying that Iran’s BRICS membership has shaken the regional countries’ confidence in the US, Velayati added, “… this membership has placed an East-oriented policy as well as more alliance and cooperation with the regional states at the top of [Iran’s] foreign policies…”
He emphasized that Iran’s accession to the BRICS group proves the country’s determination to improve constructive relations with the world and that it has succeeded in thwarting America’s long-sought isolation project.
“Today, the Islamic Republic of Iran is stronger than it was in the past. It plays a very constructive and positive role in the region and the world through its active diplomacy in all fields,” Velayati said.
Addressing the 15th BRICS Summit in Johannesburg on Thursday, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa announced that the member states had agreed to admit Iran, Argentina, Egypt, Ethiopia, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia as new members from January 1, 2024.
BRICS has gained a special place in Iran’s foreign policy due to its increasing importance in the international political economy and geopolitical developments.
BRICS was formed by and initially consisted of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, which collectively represent about 40 percent of the global population and a quarter of the world’s gross domestic product (GDP).
Emphasizing that in reality, Iran has never been isolated, Velayati said the country has been in continuous contact and interactions with different countries in various forms, particularly after it started to pursue a “political policy of Eastward orientation and good neighborly relations.”
“Therefore, the policy of isolation against Iran has without doubt failed and those who attempted to isolate another country ended up rather building a fence around themselves,” the Leader’s aide pointed out.
Reiterating that the United States and its allies have miserably failed in their attempt to isolate the Islamic Republic, he added, “These failed policies became more evident after Iran’s official membership in the Shanghai [Cooperation] Organization.”
Back in July, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) officially approved Iran’s full-fledged membership in the world’s largest regional organization in terms of geographic scope and population.
Iran had first applied for membership in the alliance 15 years earlier, but it took until 2021 for the request to be approved.
The SCO, which has its headquarters in China, is a diplomatic organization with eight members, namely Russia, India, Pakistan, and the Central Asian countries of Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan.