YEREVAN (Public Radio of Armenia)—President Serzh Sarkisian met with a delegation headed by Eshaq Jahangiri, first vice-president of the Islamic Republic of Iran on Thursday, which arrived in Armenia for an official visit.
The president welcomed the guests and stressed that Armenia always uses every chance to talk about its warm, age-old relationship with Iran which is of vital importance to Armenia, and is conditioned by historical-cultural similarities, mutual economic interests, peculiarities shared by their geopolitical position, and by common approaches to a number of regional issues, the President’s Press Office reported.
Serzh Sarkisian noted that Armenia is keen on further promoting high-level political dialogue and cooperation with Iran in all possible spheres. The president expressed confidence that the time has come to broaden the bilateral agenda and elevate the level of Armenian-Iranian relations by one more degree. In that context, Sarkisian attached great importance to the discussions and agreements made during Jahangiri’s visit to Armenia, which according to Sarkisian could start a new phase of bilateral relations.
Jahangiri thanked Sarkisian for the invitation to visit Armenia and for the warm welcome and at the outset, conveyed Iranian President Hassan Rouhani’s sincere greetings to Sarkisian. Jahangiri expressed satisfaction with the results of negotiations with the government of Armenia, noting that the agenda of his visit was quite busy. A number of other meetings are expected to take place in Yerevan which, according to him, will further strengthen ties between Iran and Armenia. Jahangiri stressed that Armenia, as a friendly and neighboring country, occupies a distinct place in Iran’s foreign relations.
“Armenia has been our friend in tough times and continues to be a friend with which Iran is ready to develop relations without any boundaries,” said the Iranian first vice-president, placing importance especially on the intensification of trade and economic ties.
Sarkisian and Jahangiri discussed the status of ongoing energy and transport programs, which are of crucial importance to Armenian-Iranian collaboration, as well as prospects for the implementation of new initiatives in other mutually beneficial spheres, taking into account the broadening opportunities for economic cooperation afforded by Armenia’s membership in the Eurasian Economic Union.
At the meeting, the parties also reflected on regional issues and challenges, as well as the Nagorno-Karabakh peace process, placing importance on the peaceful resolution of the conflict in accordance with standards of international law.
The interlocutors exchanged views on developments in the Middle East, including Syria. Both of them attached weight to the settlement of the Syrian crisis through peaceful negotiations.
Sarkisyan stressed the need to consolidate efforts in the fight against extremism, one of the most severe evils facing humanity, noting that Armenia is ready to make its modest contribution to that matter in an effort to promote regional stability and security.