Rouhani calls for closer Tehran-Baku ties

March 9, 2019

TEHRAN – President Hassan Rouhani has said relations between Iran and the Republic of Azerbaijan are expanding in different fields, underlining the need to strengthen them.

Rouhani made the remarks in a meeting with Foreign Minister of the Republic of Azerbaijan Elmar Mammadyarov in Tehran on Saturday.

The president also voiced Iran’s willingness to boost trilateral cooperation with Azerbaijan and Russia by carrying out various joint projects, Mehr reported.

He pointed to the opportunities for cooperation between Tehran and Baku in the energy industry and construction of dams and power plants.

For his part, Mammadyarov hailed the “brotherly” relations between Tehran and Baku, saying there are no obstacles to the enhancement of political, economic, cultural and social ties with Tehran.

He also conveyed an official invitation from Azeri President Ilham Aliyev to Rouhani to attend the next Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) conference in Baku.

Heading a diplomatic delegation, Mammadyarov also met his Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif to exchange views on bilateral issues and regional developments.

The Azeri foreign minister also met Ali Shamkhani, secretary of the Supreme National Security Council.

During the meeting, Mammadyarov reaffirmed that his country will maintain close economic ties with Tehran irrespective of the sanctions.

He voiced Azerbaijan’s willingness to expand relations with Iran in all fields, saying Baku welcomes any initiative to that end.

Shamkhani said Iran and Azerbaijan are determined to broaden bilateral relations, particularly in economic fields, adding that closer interaction would contribute to regional security and stability.

He emphasized that the friendly relations between the two Muslim neighbors do not pose a threat to any other country and would never be influenced by others.

In recent years, Tehran and Baku have developed close ties in different fields such as defense and economy.

Iran and Azerbaijan have also been working on a key North-South transport corridor, which is expected to connect Northern Europe to Southeast Asia through their territories.

MH/PA