Rouhani: Iran after stronger ties with friends

July 22, 2020 - 18:27

TEHRAN — President Hassan Rouhani says Iran is seeking to broaden its relations with its neighbors as well as other friendly countries.

“We hope to boost our cooperation with the neighbors including Iraq, Turkey, Qatar, Pakistan and Afghanistan as well as all other friendly states such as China and Persian Gulf and Caspian Sea littoral states,” Rouhani said during a cabinet session on Wednesday, Mehr reported.

The president also hailed Iran’s constructive relations with China and Russia in the past years.

“In continuation of our diplomacy we have had fruitful talks with the Russian and Chinese sides in the past weeks to strengthen our relations,” he remarked.

On Saturday, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif made a one-day visit to the Iraqi cities of Baghdad and Erbil and held talks with senior officials of the country.

On Tuesday, Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi arrived in Tehran for a two-day visit to discuss bilateral ties and hold talks on other important issues.

He met with Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, President Rouhani and other senior officials.

At a joint press conference with Kadhimi on Tuesday, Rouhani said Kadhimi’s visit to Tehran will serve as a “milestone” in bilateral ties between the two neighbors.

“I am positive that this trip functions as a milestone in [the process of] development of the two friendly and brotherly countries’ relations,” he said.

Kadhimi, who assumed his country’s premiership in May, had planned to visit Saudi Arabia on his first official trip, but he postponed the visit on account of Saudi King Salman’s hospitalization for “some medical tests.”

Rouhani said his administration was determined to take the volume of Iran and Iraq’s annual bilateral trade to $20 million.

The president acknowledged that Kadhimi took over Iraq’s premiership “in very sensitive circumstances.” Nevertheless, his incumbency so far has witnessed “a favorable movement [forward]” in the development of the countries’ bilateral trade, Rouhani added.


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