Iranian President visits Armenia to expand cooperation

Source:Xinhua Published: 2016/12/22 9:26:49

Iranian President Hasan Rouhani flew into Yerevan on Wednesday at the invitation of his Armenian counterpart to pursue further cooperation, Armenian president's press office announced.

The visit comes at an interesting moment when Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visited Armenia's archenemy Azerbaijan last week.

Iran has largely held a neutral position in Armenia's longstanding border dispute with Azerbaijan and has developed friendly relations with both countries.

During President Rouhani's visit, Armenia and Iran signed a number of cooperation agreements in areas of medicine, culture, economy and others, aiming at further deepening their economic ties following the lifting of international sanctions against Iran, the press office said in a statement.

Since 2012, with the help of the Asian Development Bank, Armenia has built a 556 km high-speed road stretching from its border with Iran to the northern border with Georgia. Armenian government hopes the route will become a transit path for cargo from Iran to the Black Sea ports of Georgia.

The overall trade turnover between the two countries in 2015 was 280 million US dollars. Despite having just a 42-km-long border with Iran, Armenia has maintained warm relations with Tehran since its independence in 1991. .

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