Strong Tehran-Ankara Ties Benefit Region

Strong Tehran-Ankara Ties Benefit Region Strong Tehran-Ankara Ties Benefit Region

President Hassan Rouhani met Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu on Saturday to discuss ways of promoting cooperation between the two neighbors.

In the meeting with Davutoglu, Rouhani said cementing ties between Iran and Turkey will enable them to collaborate on solving the gravest problems of the region and the Muslim world, especially terrorism and Israeli aggressions.

"Problems of the Muslim world should be settled by Muslim countries, without foreign interference," he said. "They should work to end disputes within the Muslim world and stand against Islamophobia and [other] anti-Islam conspiracies."

The president said the development of economic and commercial cooperation between Tehran and Ankara needs closer banking links and encouraged private sectors.

"With the removal of [international] sanctions on Iran [as a result of its nuclear deal with major powers], an opportunity for developing wide-ranging cooperation has emerged, which should be fully used," he said.

"Iran and Turkey can achieve their goal of increasing bilateral trade to $30 billion by boosting collaboration in the fields of commerce, economy, culture, tourism and transit, among others."

Davutoglu stressed Turkey's determination to encourage partnership with Tehran.

The Turkish premier said there is no cap on interactions between the two sides' banks and businessmen, adding that replacing the current preferential trade agreement with a free trade agreement would greatly help facilitate bilateral commerce.

The president arrived in Turkey on Wednesday night to attend the 13th Islamic Summit Conference of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, which was held in Istanbul on Thursday and Friday with more than 30 heads of state in attendance.

After the meeting, Rouhani left for capital Ankara to hold bilateral discussions with high-ranking Turkish officials.

Later in the day, Rouhani and Erdogan chaired a meeting of high-ranking delegations of the two sides, in which eight memorandums of understanding were signed in various fields, including culture, science, agriculture and education.