Russia for enhancement of ties with Iran, Islamic states

Iran Materials 4 December 2006 15:37 (UTC +04:00)

(IRNA) - A Russian official here Monday stressed the importance of bolstering ties with Iran and other Islamic states in the hope of finding solutions to the problems of the region, reports Trend.

Russian President Vladimir Putin's representative for Islamic states' affairs and commissioner for relations with the Islamic world, Venyamin Popov, made the remarks during a meeting with an Iranian member of the Russia-Islamic World Strategic Vision Group, Mehdi Sanaei.

Pointing to the widening gulf between Western states and the Islamic world, Popov said he believes Russia's cooperation with Islamic states would help settle the problems in Iraq, Palestine and the Middle East region.

He expressed Moscow's willingness to cooperate with bodies affiliated to the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC), including the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) and the OIC Scientific, Cultural and Art Organization, and called on Iran to cooperate with Russia with regard to activities of the OIC secretariat in Tehran.

Sanaei, for his part, expressed Iran's support for Russia's increasing role in issues affecting the region and the Islamic world and called for a more active role for Moscow in this regard.

Sanaei, who is also an advisor to the secretary-general of the World Assembly for Proximity of Islamic Schools of Thoughts (WAPIST), urged stronger Iran-Russia cooperation on issues relating to the Islamic world.

The Russia-Islamic World Strategic Vision Group was established in March 2006 to help settle issues affecting the region and the Islamic world.

Russia was granted observer status in the OIC in 2005.