China’s Special Envoy in Iran

China’s Special Envoy in Iran  China’s Special Envoy in Iran

China has sent the head of the state-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission as its special envoy to Iran, the foreign ministry said on Monday, a week after the top Iranian diplomat called for China’s help to resolve tensions in the Middle East.

China and Iran have close diplomatic, economic, trade and energy ties, and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi has been active in pushing both the United States and Iran to reach agreement on the nuclear issue.

Zhang Yi, head of SASAC, was to be in Iran from Monday to Wednesday, Reuters quoted Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei as telling a daily news briefing. He did not elaborate on the reason for Zhang’s visit.

Last Tuesday, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said Iran wants China’s help to resolve tensions and unrest in the Middle East and is ready to play host to more Chinese firms once sanctions against it are lifted.

China’s SASAC is a ministry-level body that directly oversees 112 central government industrial and service conglomerates.

Under the multilateral deal, agreed in July, sanctions imposed by the United States, European Union and United Nations will be lifted in return for Iran agreeing to long-term curbs on its nuclear program.

China had long railed against unilateral sanctions imposed on Iran by the United States and Europe, though it has supported UN ones, and had denounced threats of force.