Expanding bilateral ties between Iran-Russia is an important factor in security of Central Asia and the Middle East, said Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad-Javad Zarif.
"Iran and Russia, as two neighbors, should have extensive ties and these ties should include various aspects and be promoted horizontally and vertically,” Zarif said Zarif in a message to a conference commemorating 515th anniversary of Tehran-Moscow historical tie.
"Expanding the relations is not only in favor of the two countries, but also it is an important factor in security, stability and development of Central Asia and the Middle East.”
He expressed hope that interactions between the two countries which have been on the rise over last 3 decades could be expanded further in all areas.
Zarif said that the conference would pave the way for boosting public and cultural connection between the two nations and strengthening bilateral ties.
Iran and Russia held the conference in Tehran to mark more than 500 years of bilateral political relations.
The conference was held at the Iranian Foreign Ministry’s Center for International Research and Education on Monday, attended by Russia’s Ambassador to Tehran Levan Jagarian and Iran’s envoy to Moscow Mahdi Sanai.
Jagarian read out a message from Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov to the opening of the conference, titled "515 Years of Relations between Iran and Russia.”
In a speech, Iranian Ambassador Sanai also highlighted the current "strategic ties” between the two countries, a clear sign of which, he said, is their close military interaction and Russia's delivery of the S-300 air defense missile system to Iran.
Since coming into force in January 2016 of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), a nuclear deal between Iran and the Group 5+1 (Russia, China, the US, Britain, France and Germany), Tehran and Moscow have ramped up efforts to boost bilateral trade.
In August 2016, Jagarian said trade turnover between the two countries has grown 70.9 percent in year-on-year terms following the removal of anti-Tehran sanctions.
Iran and Russia have also formed a strong alliance in recent years, with both supporting
the Syrian government against foreign-backed militancy.