Tehran : Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi has stressed that “the ground is prepared” for taking more effective steps to expand cooperation between Iran and Russia in line with the interests of both sides.
Raisi made the remarks in a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow on Thursday while commenting on the two countries’ good bilateral cooperation in the energy and agriculture sectors as well as the area of knowledge-based firms, Xinhua news agency reported, citing a statement issued on the Iranian presidency’s website.
Raisi expressed satisfaction with the growing bilateral relations, saying cooperation with Russia was important in line with Iran’s neighbour-oriented policy.
Turning to the regional and international developments, Raisi said what had caused humanity suffering were unilateralism and an unjust world order, “one of the manifestations of which can be seen today in Gaza.”
He denounced Israel’s “crimes against the defenceless people of Gaza as genocide and crimes against humanity”, referring to Israel’s ongoing strikes on the Gaza Strip.
“Israel’s crimes, including the killing of over 6,000 children in military strikes on Gaza, were supported by the United States and (some) Western countries,” Raisi said.
He regretted that “one child is dying every 10 minutes in Gaza”, highlighting the necessity to stop “the bombardments and crimes” against Palestinians in the coastal enclave.
Putin, for his part, said that the relations between the two countries were “at the best possible level”.
Putin added that Russian traders’ eye-catching presence in Iran’s trade exhibitions and the 20 per cent rise in bilateral trade with an annual turnover of $5 billion in the past year was indicative of the determination of Moscow and Tehran to open a new chapter in bilateral ties.
He said joint transportation, road, and railroad projects were progressing well and the two countries’ cooperation in the energy sector was witnessing continuous growth.
Putin pointed to the two countries’ common positions on regional issues, emphasizing that exchanging views on Palestine’s issue and the Gaza Strip was also among the topics of negotiations between Russia and Iran.
Iran and Russia, both being sanctioned by the United States, have recently expanded bilateral political and economic relations to counter the US moves.
The two countries on Tuesday signed a joint declaration of cooperation to counter the sanctions and reduce the unilateral coercive measures’ negative impacts, according to Iran’s official news agency IRNA. — IANS