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Indian, Iranian FMs hold negotiations on bilateral, regional and international issues

Tehran, Sept 4, IRNA-Indian Minister of External Affairs K. Natwar Singh and his Iranian counterpart Manouchehr Mottaki on Saturday held talks on bilateral, regional and international issues.

Mottaki said that Iran's new government emphasizes justice as a criteria to be respected in international relations and believes that double standard and selective approaches in dealing with international issues should come to an end.

On reform plan of the United Nations, Mottaki said that UN reform should secure interests and considerations of the developing nations.

Mottaki said that Iran has decided to strike a balance in its relations with foreign states and pay special attention to the East and the Asian nations and on this basis Iran and India should further develop bilateral relations.

He said that trade between Iran and India stood at dlrs three billion last year, adding that signing accords on avoiding double-taxation and introducing tariff facility would help encourage trade.

Mottaki pointed to Iran-India high capacity for regional cooperation and said that Iran-India-Pakistan gas pipeline and North-South transport network and other joint multi-lateral projects would guarantee peace and development in the region.

On Iraq, Mottaki said that Iran supports national sovereignty and establishment of democracy in Iraq as well as withdrawal of foreign troops from the country, adding that hands are still at work to damage Iraq's national solidarity.

Mottaki said that terrorist attacks in Iraq aim to cause split and sectarian conflict among the Iraqi nation.

"Terrorism is the output of certain policies which have been exercised in the region so far. The US is responsible for setting up the terrorist and extremist groups," he said.

Singh for his part, said that India is willing to develop relations with Iran and welcomes Iran's strategy in this respect.

"India is willing to cooperate with all members of Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) including Iran and shares similar views about regional and international issues with Iran," Singh said.

Singh said that India is willing to carry out project of tripartite gas pipeline regardless of foreign interference.

The two foreign ministers agreed to hold Tehran-New Delhi Joint Economic Commission meeting in Tehran in March.

... Payvand News - 9/4/05 ... --

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