Jun 23, 2021, 6:30 PM
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Russian envoy optimistic on future of Tehran-Moscow ties

Tehran, IRNA - Levan Dzhagaryan, the Russian ambassador to Tehran, expressed hope that Russia and Iran will continue cooperation and amicable ties based on respecting the mutual interests of both nations.

Dzhagaryan told IRNA on Wednesday that President Vladimir Putin was the first president, who felicitated the victory of the president-elect Ebrahim Raisi in the 13th presidential election of Iran.
"I'm sure that the Iran-Russia relations as in the past will improve while maintaining joint interests of both nations and I'm very optimistic on Iran-Russia ties during Mr. Raisi's tenure," the ambassador said.
He also expressed hope that the two sides will resume trips and talks at different levels after the end of the coronavirus pandemic, noting that undoubtedly, the Iranian friends will help pave the way for realizing joint objectives.
US's withdrawal from Afghanistan
Asked about the United States' pull-out from Afghanistan, he stipulated that Moscow is "very concerned" about the situation in Afghanistan and that after 20 years of military presence, the US and NATO could achieve some results in different areas, but they could not resolve all issues. They spent a lot of money, but poverty is very common in Afghanistan; so, many Afghans migrate to Iran, Pakistan, and Europe, he added.
However, they have reached the conclusion that they could not do anything in Afghanistan; therefore, they want to withdraw from the country, he said, noting that unfortunately, the pull-out is irresponsible, because the US wants to put the burden on the shoulder of the neighboring states.
Russia's ties with West Asian players
Dzhagaryan further said that Moscow monitors the situation in the West Asia region and that Russia has a close relationship with all regional players such as Iran, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Lebanon, Yemen, Hezbollah, and Israel.
This is a unique capability of the Russian Federation to contact all players and try to find political solutions for all tensions especially in the Persian Gulf, he argued.
Dzhagaryan pointed to similarities of Russian and Iranian initiatives to solve problems between Iran and certain Persian Gulf littoral states, underlining the need for preserving security in the region.
No obstacle to exchange arms
According to the Russian diplomat, Moscow played a key role in lifting the arms embargo on Iran in 2020 and mobilized other countries to support this effort, while the US and its allies resisted.
Expressing readiness to commence arms exchanges with Iran, the Russian envoy said that there is no obstacle in the way of purchasing and selling weapons in accordance with international regulations. 
He urged certain countries, which are concerned about the exchange of arms with the Islamic Republic, to stop being upset because Iran will not attack any country and is not a threat to others.
Vienna agreement to pave way for solving conflicts
Referring to the Joint Commission meetings to revive the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) in the Austrian capital Vienna, he noted that there are still many difficulties in Vienna, which cannot be announced in media; however, consensus needs political decision-making.
The European diplomats in particular Enrique Mora, the chief coordinator of Vienna talks, played a constructive role in this regard, the Russian ambassador said, adding that the Americans are very flexible in the negotiations.
Elsewhere in his remarks, Dzhagaryan said that the recent meeting between the Russian president and his American counterpart Joe Biden is pleasant, but there are still serious and deep disagreements between the two sides.
Russia's stance on Iran is firm and Moscow is of the opinion that the illegal and unilateral sanctions should be lifted because the Islamic Republic is an important player in the region, he concluded.

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