Baku, Azerbaijan, March 13
By Temkin Jafarov - Trend:
The meeting of Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani in Davos has marked the beginning of new relations between Baku and Tehran, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Asia and Oceania and Special Representative for Caspian Sea Affairs, Ebrahim Rahimpour said on March 13.
Rahimpour made the remarks at a press conference held in Baku.
He said the two presidents have demonstrated a strong will in development of mutual relations.
Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev's visit to Iran is being currently prepared, following the meeting of the two presidents in Davos, according to Rahimpour.
A special work schedule has also been developed. The work schedule includes discussion of the development of cooperation in many areas.
Rahimpour said reciprocal visits of delegations are planned to be held in 2014.
The deputy foreign minister stressed that Iran intends to raise the level of relations with Azerbaijan to the level of relations with Turkey. He noted that the meetings held in Baku discussed the implementation of decisions taken by the heads of the two states in Davos.
The deputy minister stressed that Azerbaijan and Iran are important countries in the region and the trade between them stands at half a billion U.S. dollars. He said the good relations between Iran and Azerbaijan contribute to security and stability in the region.
Commenting on his visit to Nakhchivan, Rahimpour stressed that there he will discuss the development of ties. He also expressed satisfaction with the fact that he sees a strong and economically developed Azerbaijan.
Rahimpour also said he is the first representative of the new Iranian government to pay a visit to Baku.
"There will start various visits from Azerbaijan to Iran following my visit. Tomorrow the Emergency Situations Minister Kemaleddin Heydarov will visit Iran, during which there will be a series of meetings. Afterwards some Azerbaijani ministers will pay visits to Iran," the deputy minister said.
Asked about visas, Rahimpour stressed that the Iranian side would be happy if Azerbaijani side abolishes visas for the citizens of Iran.
He said the importance of both bilateral and five-party talks on the Caspian Sea's legal status was stressed during a meeting with Azerbaijani Deputy Foreign Minister Khalaf Khalafov.
Iranian deputy foreign minister said he is confident that no unresolved issues will remain between the two states.
He added that the Caspian Sea is a sea of peace, and its wealth must be preserved for future generations.
After Baku, Ebrahim Rahimpour will visit Nakhchivan on March 15-16. It is planned that there Rahimpour will meet with the chairman of the Supreme Assembly of the Nakhchivan Autonomous Republic Vasif Talibov and other officials.
Translated by E.A.
Edited by C.N