Azeri deputy prime minister holds ‘constructive’ talks in Tehran

November 22, 2021 - 21:35

TEHRAN – Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman has praised the visit by a senior Azerbaijani official to Tehran, describing the visit as “constructive.”

Speaking at a weekly press conference on Monday, Saeed Khatibzadeh said Shahin Mostafayev, Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic of Azerbaijan, held extensive meetings with Iranian officials during his stint in Tehran. 

The Azerbaijani official arrive in Tehran on Sunday and met with a number of Iranian officials including Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian. 

The visit by the Deputy Prime Minister of Azerbaijan was "remarkable and constructive", the spokesman said, adding Mostafayev had very intensive meetings with two cabinet members and a detailed meeting with Amir Abdollahian.

“The visit of the Deputy Prime Minister of Azerbaijan was a remarkable and constructive one, and he had very intensive meetings with cabinet members and a detailed meeting with Amir Abdollahian,” Khatibzadeh stated. 

He added, “Many projects were discussed, and the relations, God willing, are designed to enter a new phase after the unwanted and unnecessary media tension that we passed through with the tact of both sides. This trip was in the same direction.”

The spokesman brought good tidings of enhancement of bilateral ties with Azerbaijan. “Other good news about the relations between the two countries is on the way, and the Republic of Azerbaijan defined this trip as a basis for the implementation of some projects, and we followed this approach. Trips will take place between the two countries at different levels over the next few weeks,” Khatibzadeh said. 

Commenting on a possible meeting between the President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev and Iranian President Ayatollah Seyed Ibrahim Raisi on the sidelines of the ECO summit in Ashgabat, he said, “The meeting between Mr. Aliyev and Dr. Raisi is normal in this diplomatic framework, but you should ask the President's Office.”

The remarks came a day after Amir Abdollahian and Mostafayev held a meeting at the Iranian foreign ministry. Khatibzadeh described the meeting as “detailed.”

The two officials discussed the latest developments in the Caucasus region and cooperation between Iran and Azerbaijan.

Mostafayev is also the Chairman of the Joint Commission for Economic Cooperation between Tehran and Baku.

In the meeting, Amir Abdollahian expressed satisfaction with the upward trend in trade relations and deep ties between the two nations.

He called the liberation of Azerbaijan’s territories the beginning of a new chapter in economic relations between the two countries and stressed the need for the two sides to use all economic capacities in the fields of trade, transport, energy and tourism, according to the Iranian foreign ministry.

The top Iranian diplomat referred to the capabilities of the Islamic Republic and announced that Iranian companies are ready to participate in the reconstruction of the newly liberated areas.

Amir Abdollahian also cited the success of the two countries in vaccination against the Covid-19 and underlined the need to facilitate communication between citizens of both sides and re-establish flights between the two countries. The foreign minister reaffirmed Iran’s unwavering support for the territorial integrity of countries, stressing that international borders are unchangeable.

The deputy prime minister of the Republic of Azerbaijan also expressed satisfaction with his constructive meetings with Iran’s oil and transport and urban development ministers, saying the two countries are close to signing historic agreements in the fields of oil, gas and transportation.

Mostafayev also stressed the constructive role of the two countries' foreign ministers in overcoming the recent tensions. 

He said a meeting of the joint Commission for Economic Cooperation between the two countries will be held early next year. In other remarks, the Azeri deputy prime minister referred to the increase in trade exchanges between Tehran and Baku since the beginning of 2021. Mostafiyev said the 22% hike in trade during the Covid pandemic indicates friendly relations and economic capacities of the two sides.

Amir Abdollahian and Mostafayev also discussed the forthcoming ECO summit and the documents of bilateral agreements. 

The meeting came against a backdrop of tensions between Azerbaijan and Iran. Both countries made efforts to overcome misunderstandings and repair relations. Mostafayev’s visit was an indication that the two countries have succeeded in bringing tensions under control.

In early November, Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Jeyhun Bayramov expressed interest in beefing up ties with Iran in various fields after weeks of heightened tensions between the two neighbors.

“We are interested in developing relations with Iran and many areas of cooperation lie ahead of the two countries,” he said in remarks to Iran’s state TV.

He added, “I can say that due to the many commonalities between the two countries, there are many plans for bilateral cooperation. I am sure that we can develop the good relationship of the past based on good neighborliness.”

Emphasizing the continuation of diplomatic talks between the foreign ministry officials, the foreign minister of the Republic of Azerbaijan said, “We are satisfied with the formal and informal diplomatic talks of recent weeks and we believe that some issues can be resolved through telephone conversations with my esteemed colleague Amir Abdollahian.” 

The top Azerbaijani diplomat played down the recent tensions between Iran and Azerbaijan, saying that disagreements between countries are always possible. 

“Disagreements between all countries are possible and no country is an exception to this rule and may even be among neighboring countries, but our close relations and neighborhood with Iran have shown that some of these differences can be resolved through dialogue,” he said.

Referring to the need to develop relations between the two countries, Bayramov said, “The priority of the foreign policy of the Republic of Azerbaijan is to maintain and develop relations with neighboring countries, especially the Islamic Republic of Iran. Given the many fields and capacities of bilateral cooperation and the always positive background of these relations, we will see the development of relations between the two countries in the future.”

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