Iran Eyes Closer Naval Coop. With Russia
Commander of an Iranian naval flotilla that has docked at Russia's port city of Makhachkala on a friendly visit said Iran is looking to enhance "good and constructive" naval cooperation with Russia. "We are here to strengthen good and constructive interaction with Russia with a focus on safeguarding peace," Captain Mohsen Sheidaei told Sputnik Persian on Tuesday, as cited by Tasnim News Agency. He added, "We are proud that we managed to turn threats into opportunities during the sanctions period," he said. The Iranian naval flotilla, comprising Damavand destroyer and Darafsh missile-launching vessel, berthed at the Russian port on Thursday. Upon its arrival, the Iranian vessels were welcomed by three Russian Buyan M-class corvettes, namely Grad Sviyazhsk, Uglich and Velikiy Ustug. In October 2016, a Russian flotilla of warships arrived in Iran's Caspian Sea territorial waters near the northern port city of Bandar Anzali as part of reciprocal visits.