MOSCOW, February 19. /TASS/. The foreign Ministers of Russia and Iran Sergei Lavrov and Mohammad Javad Zarif held talks Monday to discuss cooperation between the two countries on a wide range of issues, as well as the most “acute” regional stories. This meeting was the second in the just the beginning of 2018, Ministers have met in Moscow on 10 January. Then the center of attention of the heads of depodesta was the situation in Syria and the implementation of the agreement on the Iranian nuclear program. This time, Zarif arrived in the Russian capital to participate in the conference of the international discussion club “Valdai” on the situation in the middle East.
“This meeting showed that the positions of Iran and Russia on many regional issues are very close,” said in this regard, the foreign Minister of Iran.
As during the previous meeting of Ministers, meeting room, on the Russian side, gathered a representative delegation: here was attended by Deputy foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov and Igor Morgulov, the Russian President’s special envoy for Afghanistan, Director of second Asia Department of the foreign Ministry Zamir Kabulov, Director of the Middle East and North Africa of the foreign Ministry Sergei Vershinin.
Zarif is a frequent guest in Russia, and this visit, according to his confession, became the twenty-second. “It shows the depth of strategic relations between Iran and Russia, which still played a very important role in establishing security and stability in our region,” he said.
After talks with his Russian counterpart, the foreign Minister of Iran talked to a waiting press. Seeing that among those gathered in the representatives of the Russian media, Zarif himself invited the translator and, to the surprise of journalists, did not answer the questions of Iranian TV, while the translation was not provided.
The relative calm observed around the situation with the Iranian nuclear programme after its launch in January 2016 Joint comprehensive plan of action (SVPD) in recent months has been disrupted by critics of the agreement and threats to get out of it from Washington. The situation escalated when in October last year, President Donald trump outlined a new, tougher U.S. strategy toward Tehran. The US President also refused to confirm the implementation of the Tehran AGREEMENT and promised to seek changes in the agreement, otherwise the United States will cease to participate. When in January the us President has extended the freeze mode of sanctions against Iran, warned that doing this in last time and only with the goal “to conclude an agreement with European allies in order to correct the horrible deficiencies of the Iranian nuclear deal.”
In turn, his Iranian counterpart said that Russia and Iran, “unlike many other countries, has never had any illusions about the solution to the Syrian crisis.” “We have always advocated a political settlement, explained Zarif. – I hope that we will continue the dialogue on this matter to those important agreements to find a political settlement, which Russia, Iran, Turkey came to be further strengthened”.
Head of the Iranian guardian also drew attention to cooperation between Moscow and Tehran in the fight against international terrorism. “In the framework of the Astana process we strive to make it so that terrorists and extremists could not be present on Syrian territory, – said Zarif in an interview with reporters after talks with Lavrov. – We are successful in this business, because we managed to reduce the level of tension”.
In addition, the Iranian Minister told the representatives of the media, the timing of the meeting of the foreign Ministers of Russia, Turkey and Iran in the Kazakh capital, which was not known previously. “Two weeks in Astana three countries-the guarantor will meet at the level of foreign Ministers to reduce the level of tension in Syria,” he said, noting that this meeting “set the stage” for the summit in Istanbul on a political settlement in the SAR.
A consequence of the actions of the United States
As during a speech at the opening conference discussion club “Valdai”, and on the negotiations of the foreign Ministers of Russia and Iran expressed concern at the military presence of the USA in Syria and the consequences to which it might lead.
Moscow has repeatedly pointed out the illegality of the U.S. military presence in Syria, saying about the possible plans of Washington section of this country that is completely contrary to international law. In an interview with reporters, the foreign Minister of Iran said that this “adventure” USA undermines the security of both Syria and neighbouring countries. “The events that occur in Syria, including the illegitimate US presence, of very serious concern, – said Zarif. – They undermine the security of not only Syria but other countries in the region, such as Turkey.”
He also confirmed that at the meeting with Lavrov discussed the situation in the Syrian district of Afrin, where the Turkey from January 20 to conducts against the Kurdish forces of “operation Olive branch”. “We discussed this issue [the situation in Afrin] – said the Iranian foreign Minister. And we understand that U.S. policy in Syria has led to serious concern in the region in the long term it can have a serious impact on Syria, including in ethnic terms”.
“I hope that this policy will not lead to military interference in the internal Affairs of Syria,” concluded Zarif.
In anticipation of the intergovernmental Commission
The Ministers touched upon the topic of trade and economic cooperation between Russia and Iran. Zarif said that relations between the two countries have made “very good progress”. “We are confident that the agreements that we came on the facilitation of the visits of the citizens of the two countries and to strengthen banking ties, in the near future will pass in a practical plane”, – said the head of the Iranian guardian. He expressed confidence that the forthcoming meeting of the Russian-Iranian intergovernmental Commission on trade and economic cooperation will enable better “to prepare the ground to develop relations in the field of Economics and to undertake new measures in this area.”
Earlier, the Russian Ambassador to Tehran Levan of jagarian said in an interview with TASS that the next meeting of the intergovernmental Commission scheduled to be held in Moscow on 5-6 March. According to the diplomat, this meeting should give the necessary impetus to the cooperation between the two countries. Jagaran also highlighted among the priorities of cooperation in the field of economy and trade of three major projects: the second and third phase of the Bushehr NPP, the construction of four power units of TPP Sirik Hormozgan province and electrification of the railway section of Garmsar – Ince Burun.