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Iran, Belarus Defense Ministers Hold 1st Round of Talks

Tehran, Jan 21, IRNA-Visiting Belarus Defense Minister Leonid Maltsev and his Iranian counterpart Brigadier General Mostafa Mohammad-Najjar on Sunday held their first round of talks.

Maltsev, heading a top-ranking delegation, arrived in Tehran on Sunday for an official two-day visit at the invitation of Mohammad-Najjar.

Pointing to Iran's principled policy on expansion of cooperation with the friendly and independent states, the Iranian minister said, "Defense and security convergence and interaction with different states are on agenda of Iran's Defense Ministry."

He added that expansion of defense cooperation between Iran and Belarus showed determination of the two sides' political leaders and a very good sign for cooperation between two independent states.

"Belarus enjoys a special status in Iran's foreign policy.

"Although the sides have no common borders, similar point of view between Tehran and Minsk on regional and international issues has led the two nations to satisfactory cooperation," Mohammad-Najjar said.

He added, "The Islamic Republic of Iran has always had constructive cooperation with different countries through negotiations during its 28-year political life (after victory of the Islamic Revolution in 1979).

"It believes that understanding, friendship and cooperation serve the nations' interests and lead to peace, tranquility and development in the entire world."

Maltsev, for his part, said the visit by Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko to Iran in November, 2006 was a turning point in ties between Tehran and Minsk.

He expressed confidence implementation of agreements signed between the two sides during Lukashenko's Tehran visit would pave the way for bolstering bilateral cooperation.

The Belarus minister stressed Iran's special role in regional and international equations and voiced his country's readiness to promote defense cooperation between the two countries.

He condemned dual and discriminatory policies of certain countries on regional developments and said his country enjoys a common stance with Iran in this regard.

... Payvand News - 1/21/07 ... --

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