Moscow, Tehran ink deal on military cooperation

20 January 2015 14:42 (UTC+04:00)

By Sara Rajabova

Russia and Iran signed an agreement on military-technical cooperation and joint work to confront the threats in the region.

A memorandum of understanding on military cooperation between the two countries was signed by Sergei Shoigu, Russian Defense Minister General and his Iranian counterpart Brigadier General Hossein Dehqan on January 20, Fars news agency reported.

Shoigu has arrived in Iran for talks with senior Iranian officials on ways to promote defense ties between Moscow and Tehran.

The accord emphasizes fighting terrorism, extremism and separatism as well as boosting mutual cooperation for peace and security in the region.

The MoU also includes holding joint military drills, cooperation in military training as well as fighting against piracy in international waters and the Caspian Sea, according to the Iranian defense ministry’s website.

The two ministers also agreed to resolve disputes over delivering Russian S-300 missile system to Iran. No further details on the issue have been published yet.

A contract inked in 2007 requires Russia to provide Iran with at least five S-300 missile defense systems.

However, Moscow refrained from meeting its obligations under the pretext that they were covered by the fourth round of the UN Security Council resolutions against Iran.

After the talks with Iranian counterpart, Shoigu said Russia is interested in expanding ties with Iran in military sphere.

“We stand for long-term and multi-level cooperation with Iran and welcome the Iranian leadership’s attempts to expanding its ties with Russia, including in military defense,” Shoigu said during talks with Dehghan, RIA Novosti reported.

Noting that his visit is the first visit to Iran by Russian Defense Minister for the last 15 years, Shoigu proposed to discuss prospects of cooperation between the two countries within the framework of the mentioned document, as well as priority practical measures, which’s implementation will be begun in the near future.

Russia and Iran currently enjoy close cooperation in various areas, particularly in the defense sector.

In May 2014, the Iranian defense minister paid an official visit to Russia to take part in an international security conference.

In January of 2014, Tehran and Moscow signed another MoU to increase security cooperation between the two countries.

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Sara Rajabova is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @SaraRajabova

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