The Astana summit in Tehran has started in presence of the Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi as well as his Russian and Turkish counterparts Vladimir Putin and Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Putin and Erdogan had arrived on Tuesday in Tehran to meet the Supreme Leader Imam Sayyed Ali Khamenei and President Raisi, knowing that the Russian and Turkish leaders held bilateral talks as well.
It is worth noting that the tripartite meeting discussed the Syrian crisis and the means to reach a political solution.
The three leaders agreed to continue consultations and cooperation to “eliminate terrorists” in Syria, in a statement following their meeting.
They “reaffirmed the determination to continue their ongoing cooperation in order to ultimately eliminate terrorist individuals, groups, undertakings and entities, while ensuring the protection of the civilians and civilian infrastructure in accordance with international humanitarian law,” the statement read.
Putin called the summit “truly useful and rather substantial,” describing the atmosphere as “businesslike and constructive.” He also invited Raisi and Erdogan to visit Russia for a follow-up meeting “before the end of the year.”
In a separate meeting with Raisi, Putin said that Iranian-Russian relations “are developing at a good pace.” The Russian leader said Moscow and Tehran will “strengthen their cooperation on international security and contribute significantly to the Syrian settlement.”
Earlier, Imam Khamenei told the Turkish President on Tuesday that any military attack on northern Syria will definitely harm Turkey, Syria, and the entire region.
In a meeting with visiting Erdogan in Tehran, Imam Khamenei considered the issue of territorial integrity of Syria as very important, Iranian media reported.
Any attack on Syria “is definitely to the detriment of Syria as well as Turkey and the region. It will also not allow the Syrian government’s political measures to be materialized,” the Leader warned during the meeting attended also by President Raisi.
“Terrorism must be opposed, but a military attack on Syria will benefit terrorists, although terrorists are not limited to a specific group,” his eminence was quoted as saying by Mehr news agency.
In response to the Turkish President’s request for Iran’s cooperation in fighting terrorist groups, Imam Khamenei said: “We will certainly cooperate with you in the fight against terrorism.”
Emphasizing that Iran considers the security of Turkey and its borders as its own security, the Leader told Erdogan, “You should also consider the security of Syria as your own security. The Syrian issues should be resolved through negotiations, and Iran, Turkey, Syria and Russia should end this issue through dialogue.”
Meanwhile, Imam Khamenei underlined the need to increase the cooperation between the two countries, especially commercial cooperation.
The National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) and Russia’s Gazprom signed a “historic” deal worth $40 billion for joint investment in oil and gas projects. The deal was signed just hours ahead of a planned visit by Russian President Vladimir Putin to Tehran.
Iran and Turkey have agreed to start negotiations on a new gas exports deal that will allow increased supply of natural gas from Iran to Turkey for a period of 25 years starting in 2026.
Source: Al-Manar English Website