Tehran Pleased Tokyo Ties Back on Track

Tehran Pleased Tokyo Ties Back on TrackTehran Pleased Tokyo Ties Back on Track

A foreign policy advisor to the Leader of Islamic Revolution said Iran is satisfied with the quick revitalization of old, close relations with Japan, which was affected by an international nuclear dispute.

Ali Akbar Velayati also said in a meeting in Tehran with Katsuyuki Kawai, an adviser to Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, that Iran favors development of cooperation with Japan as a major Asian country, IRNA reported on Wednesday.

Velayati explained that an Iranian policy of “looking to the East” had led it to give high importance to Japan ties.

“Leader of Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei attaches high importance to relations with Asia, where Japan has a special status,” he said. “Iran and Japan can engage in wide-ranging cooperation, based on their great capacities.”

Japan was one of the key clients of Iran’s oil and the two countries enjoyed strong economic ties before the US-led sanctions were imposed on the Islamic Republic in 2012, after which Japan also imposed sanctions on Iran.

However, on January 22, the Japanese Cabinet approved the lifting of its sanctions against Iran and joined the ranks of the world’s major economies to normalize trade ties with the Islamic Republic, a week after the implementation of the nuclear deal between Iran and world powers to terminate all nuclear-related sanctions on Tehran.

On regional cooperation, Velayati said Tehran and Tokyo can help improve the situation in Middle East, a sensitive and volatile region whose developments affects the world.

Kawai said the Japanese prime minister seeks a boost in mutual cooperation and exchange of views on international issues.

The Japanese advisor also said making preparations for the Japanese premier’s trip to Iran in the next couple of months is a major goal of his visit.

Kawai arrived in Iran on Monday, along with a 15-member delegation of Japanese officials, aiming to review issues of mutual interest with high-ranking Iranian officials.

During his visit, the Japanese adviser held several meetings with the head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran, Ali Akbar Salehi, Deputy Foreign Minister for Legal and International Affairs Abbas Araqchi, Central Bank of Iran Governor Valiollah Seif, Oil Minister Bijan Namdar Zanganeh, Economy Minister Ali Tayyebnia and Culture Minister Ali Jannati.