Call for Enhancing Tehran-Belgrade Ties

Call for Enhancing Tehran-Belgrade Ties
Call for Enhancing Tehran-Belgrade Ties

President Hassan Rouhani stressed the need for promoting relations between Iran and Serbia in view of the possible lifting of the United States’ illegal sanctions in the offing and revitalization of the Islamic Republic’s international cooperation.  
“With the complete lifting of [US] sanctions, a new environment will be created for Iran’s economic cooperation with the world and friendly countries had better try to use this opportunity,” he said in a meeting with Serbian Foreign Minister Nikola Selakovic in Tehran on Sunday, reported. 
He also expressed Iran’s continuing support for Serbia’s national unity as well as peace, stability and security in the Balkans and peaceful coexistence among all races and ethnic groups. 
“Combating terrorism and establishing peace and security require cooperation and all-out efforts by all countries,” he said. 
Rouhani later pointed to the current Covid-19 pandemic, expressing Iran’s readiness to start scientific cooperation with Serbia in the fight against the disease. 
The Serbian foreign minister said Belgrade has always been determined to maintain friendly ties with Iran and called for expansion of relations between the two states in the areas of mutual interest.
He also said Serbia supports Iran’s 2015 nuclear deal and its peaceful nuclear activities and hopes issues surrounding the agreement will be addressed as soon as possible. 
The deal has been in bad shape since the US pulled out and restored sanctions on Tehran. The new administration in Washington is willing to rejoin and negotiations are underway between the remaining parties and the US in Vienna, Austria, to revive the accord. 

 MOU for Cooperation 

Selakovic had earlier met his Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif on Saturday afternoon, where the two diplomats signed a memorandum of understanding for bilateral cooperation.
The MOU concerns development of friendship and cooperation between the two countries based on the principles of equality, sovereignty, territorial integrity, non-interference in each other’s domestic affairs, mutual respect and shared interests. 
Holding regular meetings and consultations on bilateral, regional and international issues and resolving regional and international crises through political, peaceful and diplomatic means are among the clauses of the document, ISNA reported. 
During the meeting, Zarif highlighted the importance of Balkans in Iran’s foreign policy, stressing the need to preserve and expand relations between Iran and Serbia in political, economic and cultural sectors, using modern and innovative mechanisms. 
Selakovic pointed to capacities for cooperation in economy and industry, describing the recent MOU as beneficial for the future of Tehran-Belgrade ties. 
The two sides also discussed issues related to the 16th round of the two countries’ joint commission for economic cooperation, US unilateral sanctions, problems in the Balkans and Iran’s surrounding region, cooperation in international forums and implementing measures for producing vaccines and combating Covid-19.

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