Iran is a very important country for Armenia, Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan said in an interview with the radio station Ekho Moskvy.
"Iran is a very important country for Armenia, not because we have been neighbors for many centuries, and still are, but also for other reasons. In fact, Iran is one of the two countries through which we communicate with the outside world," Sargsyan said.
He said to have problems with Iran means "to further narrow the tube, through which Armenia is breathing".
"Therefore we are always talking about that with our European partners and with the United States and Russia," he said.
Sargsyan said Iran is a country where large Armenian diaspora resides.
"Of course, they are citizens of Iran. But the Armenian state in some measures is responsible for the Armenians who live in this or that country, and we simply must not provoke any unpleasant actions in respect of the community," he said.
Sargsyan also emphasized the existence of economic ties between Armenia and Iran.
"Now we are trying to realize big infrastructure projects, as we agreed to build an Iran-Armenia railroad," he said, adding that it was initiated to jointly build hydropower stations on the Araz river.
"There are other, very important economy projects for Armenia," he said.
By 2014, a 365-kilometer pipeline will be built from Tabriz to Yerevan to import oil products to Armenia. Construction of this facility was discussed during a three-day visit to Armenia in January of the Iranian delegation headed by Deputy Oil Minister Alireza Zeighami.
The parties also discussed the construction of a new, third high-voltage transmission line between Iran and Armenia, which will end in summer of 2012.
Sargsyan said "even relations with Iran, and other Islamic and Arab countries are very important for Armenia."
"I was in Tehran, in the Ararat center, where you feel like in Armenia. The whole situation shows that our brothers and sisters can find the same thing at the center that they can find in Armenia," he said.
Regarding Iran's nuclear development, Sargsyan said Armenia recognizes the right of Iran to use the atom for peaceful purposes.
"We ourselves have a nuclear power station. Iran, of course, has every right to do so, but we are interested in that, in our case and in the case of Iran, all these works were under IAEA supervision."
The United States and other Western countries accuse Iran of developing nuclear weapons for military purposes under the guise of a peaceful nuclear energy program. Tehran denies the charges, saying its nuclear program is aimed solely at meeting the country's electricity needs.
The U.N. Security Council has adopted six resolutions in connection with the suspension of Iran's nuclear program; four involve the use of economic sanctions on Iran.
In June 2010 the U.N. Security Council adopted Resolution 1929, enacting new sanctions against Iran over its refusal to stop enriching uranium. Later, the U.S. Congress and foreign ministers of all EU countries approved the imposing of additional unilateral sanctions aimed mainly against the energy, banking and financial sectors of Iran.