President Shimon Peres issued a special statement on Saturday thanking the Canadian people and its leader for cutting diplomatic ties with Iran. He expressed hope that other nations will "see Canada as a moral role model" and follow in its footsteps.
"Canada has proven once again that morals come before pragmatism," the statement said. "Canada has demonstrated that policy must reflect principles and values… Iran is a source of global terror, a blatant violator of human rights and Iran aims to dominate the entire Middle East.
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"The combination of hegemonic ambition, political madness and a nuclear weapon is an unacceptable and unbearable combination which endangers the entire world and against which the entire world must act with all its power."
Currently in Italy for an economic conference, Peres said that it was "inconceivable that a UN member state will threaten to destroy another member state, it completely contradicts the UN charter. Other member states must stand against it."
Peres in Toronto earlier this year (Photo: Mark Neiman, GPO)
It has also been reported that Iran's parliamentary speaker has canceled a visit to Canada.
The Saturday report by Fars says Ali Larijani decided not to attend a meeting of parliamentarians from different countries scheduled for late October to protest to Canada's decision to close its embassy in Tehran.
Canada said on Friday that it was closing its embassy in Tehran and gave Iranian diplomats five days to leave the country, branding the Islamic Republic as the "most significant threat to global peace and security".
Ottawa cited Iran's disputed nuclear work, which Western states see as a disguised effort to develop atomic bombs, its hostility toward Israel and alleged military aid to Syrian President Bashar Assad, who is battling a popular uprising.
Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said in response that the Canadian move was a "continuation of anti-Iranian policies" by Prime Minister Stephen Harper's Conservative government, which has long had poor relations with Tehran.
AP contributed to this report
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