Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi emphasized the significance of stopping the fighting in Ukraine as soon as possible and reiterated the Islamic Republic’s willingness to assist in resolving the issue diplomatically.
Raisi warned against attempts to expand the North Atlantic Treaty Organization’s (NATO) influence in various parts of the world during a meeting with visiting Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Tehran on Wednesday, blaming the US and the military alliance that it leads as the root cause of the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.
“There is no doubt that the US and NATO provocations have been the factor behind these conflicts (in Ukraine), and therefore it is necessary to be active in the face of attempts to expand NATO’s influence in any part of the world, including in West Asia, the Caucasus and Central Asia,” he declared.
The Ukraine conflict has heightened tensions between Russia and the West, with the US and its NATO allies slapping unprecedented sanctions on Moscow and supplying Ukraine with a vast cache of weapons.
Raisi further emphasized the necessity of collaboration among Caspian Sea littoral states and stated that foreign powers are not permitted to establish a military presence in this region.
He stated that the frequent meetings and conversations between Iranian and Russian officials demonstrate the two countries’ unwavering willingness to begin a new chapter of successful and strategic collaboration, notably in the economic sector.
Raisi expressed that “Strengthening cooperation and coordination is an effective way to counter US sanctions and economic unilateralism against independent nations.”
Both Tehran and Moscow have massive oil and gas reserves but are limited in their capacity to export their products due to unilateral Western sanctions.
On Thursday, Lavrov will meet with his Iranian counterpart, Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, according to the official news agency IRNA.
Russia has faced a massive Western campaign of sanctions since the war in Ukraine began, whereas Iran’s economy has been battered by harsh sanctions reimposed by the US in 2018, following Washington’s unilateral abrupt withdrawal from the nuclear deal reached between Tehran and international nations.
The Russian foreign minister emphasized the relevance of Iran’s participation in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, adding that his country supports Tehran’s engagement in regional and international organizations.
Source: Iranian media (edited by Al-Manar English Website)