Araghchi meets top Afghan officials in Kabul

December 12, 2020 - 18:32

TEHRAN — Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araghchi has met with Afghanistan’s top officials in Kabul to discuss bilateral ties.

Araghchi met with his Afghan counterpart Meerwais Nab on Saturday during which Araghchi voiced hopes that the comprehensive document for long-term cooperation between the two countries will be finalized and be signed soon.

The two sides discussed the peace talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban and the role of the Islamic Republic of Iran in establishing a regional consensus on the political and security situation in Afghanistan.

They also exchanged views about expanding political, economic and trade relations between the two countries.

Also on Saturday, Araghchi met with Afghanistan’s National Security Adviser Hamdullah Mohib. They discussed bilateral issues, security, and the peace process in Afghanistan, according to Mehr.

Araghchi emphasized Tehran's support for the Afghan government and constitution.

It came days after Iran and Afghanistan inaugurated a strategic railway that connects Iran’s eastern city of Khaf to Afghanistan’s western city of Herat.

The railway project began in the fiscal year of 2007-2008. It included four parts, of which Iran was in charge of completing three, including two on its own soil and one on the Afghan soil.

During the Thursday inaugural ceremony, which was held via a videoconference, President Rouhani hailed the brotherly relations between the Iranian and Afghan nations, saying the inauguration of the Khaf-Herat railway will bolster the two countries’ ties.

“Today is a day of greeting, a day of blessing and a day of commencement for the two great nations of Afghanistan and Iran,” Rouhani said during the ceremony.

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani also expressed satisfaction over the inauguration of the railway project, saying it was the outcome of the two countries’ tireless efforts to bring prosperity to both sides.

He said the completion of the project in spite of problems created by the coronavirus pandemic is a clear example of the two sides’ national will to ensure development and economic progress.

Also, in remarks on Wednesday, Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif described the railway as an act of bridge-building, saying it will contribute to regional stability and development.

“The Khaf-Herat railway’s significance is not only for Iran & Afghanistan, but for the greater region,” Zarif wrote in a tweet.

“As a gateway that'll boost trade and people-to-people exchanges, it will also contribute to regional stability & development,” he said, adding, “Turning our frontiers into bridges is a priority.”

MH/PA

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