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Iranian Defense Minister Visits Russia

Report by RFE/RL; photos by Islamic Republic News Agency

Iran's defense minister is visiting Moscow for talks about closer military cooperation with Russia. Hossein Dehghan met with President Vladimir Putin on February 16 and held talks with his Russian counterpart Sergei Shoigu.

Iranian Defense Minister Hossein Dehgan shakes hands with President Vladimir Putin

Shoigu hailed a "high level of mutual trust" between the two countries and their eagerness to coordinate policies.

Russia and Iran have both been strong backers of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad during the nearly five-year conflict in Syria.

Dehghan said in an interview with Russian state television that Tehran wants to expand military and technical ties with Moscow.

Iranian Defense Minister Hossein Dehgan (R) with his Russian counterpart Sergei Shoigu

Russia has a contract with Iran to deliver long-range S-300 air defense missiles, and Tehran also has expressed interest in other Russian weaponry.

Dehghan revealed earlier this month that Tehran plans to ink a deal with Moscow for the purchase of Su-30 fighter jets.

Based on reporting by AP and Interfax


Copyright (c) 2016 RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

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