Becoming a diplomatic hub on Tuesday, Tehran witnessed the coming and going of the presidents of two key players in the world, Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey and Vladimir Putin of Russia.
Erdogan arrived late Monday, while Putin arrived on Tuesday afternoon. The two presidents held bilateral meetings together, as well as separate bilateral meetings with Ebrahim Raisi, the Iranian President.
Facing oppressive and unilateral sanctions from the United States, Iran and Russia have agreed to consolidate bilateral cooperation in various fields, including energy, oil, gas, and transit, as well as diplomatic and political relations.
The date of Putin’s visit attracted the attention of many political pundits around the world. Putin came to Tehran three days after Biden concluded his tour of West Asia which took him to Israel and Saudi Arabia. During his tour of the region, Biden intended to form a coalition against Iran. However, Putin’s visit to Tehran reminded everyone that there is a new sheriff in town.
It was for this reason that during his meeting with President Putin, Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said global developments entail mutual and growing cooperation between Iran and Russia. The Leader also said the West is entirely against a “powerful and independent” Russia.
The partnership between Tehran and Russia is also gaining more and more momentum. It is the fifth time that Putin, during his rule of Russia, is meeting Ayatollah Khamenei.
Putin’s Tuesday trip to Iran is first of its kind outside the former USSR states since the Ukraine war, which began on February 24. This was also Putin’s third meeting with President Raisi in less than a year since he took power in Tehran.
In this regard, Abolfazl Amouei, the spokesman for the Iranian parliament’s National Security and Foreign Policy Committee, told the national TV on Monday that the trip carries a “very important message” amid Biden’s regional tour and that Iran wants its relations with Russia to reach a “peak.”
During his meeting with Raisi, Putin said that his visit to Tehran will be fruitful in terms of bringing “security and stability” to the region.
Iran and Syria had a successful experience of collaboration when Daesh (ISIS) launched an astonishing bloody campaign in Syria. The two powerhouses helped defeat Daesh in Syria together.
While Biden hoped that he would bring a new order to the West Asian region and he said the U.S. is here “to stay,” Putin’s visit suggests a counter-proposal. The new order indicates that the U.S. is not the big bully anymore, and therefore, cannot decide for the region’s future. Case in point was the UAE.
The UAE said it is planning to send an ambassador to Tehran to repair the relations with Iran, according to the president’s diplomatic adviser, Anwar Gargash.
The Biden visit to the region also showed that the U.S. interventionist policies in the region have backfired, as longtime allies such as Egypt and Jordan are opposing Biden’s stances. It is time for a new world order.
Cooperation between Tehran, Moscow and Ankara can help bring sustainable peace and lasting security to the region. The visit will hopefully have tangible outcomes, unlike Biden’s regional tour which ended on a low note.
As evident in Raisi’s words during his meeting with Putin, the two presidents expressed their true will in combating terrorism.
“Cooperation in the fight against terrorism has led to the security of the region,” Raisi told Putin.
“Others claimed to fight terrorism, but our cooperation with Russia showed that we were true to our promise,” the Iranian president told his Russian counterpart.
A true friend of Iran in difficult times, Moscow has proven to be on Iran’s side when necessary.
In this regard, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Tuesday that Russia’s contacts with Iran have not been sporadic, but are the country’s long-term foreign policy course.
“Cooperation with Iran is not sporadic in its nature, it has been our long-term foreign policy course. We have long been seeking economic ties with Iran, and those have a very long history and a solid basis,” Peskov told Russia’s Channel One.
Meanwhile, on diplomatic negotiations to revive the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) on the Iranian nuclear program, Kremlin aide Yury Ushakov said on Sunday that Putin is expected during his meetings with Iranian leaders to exchange views on the main aspects of bilateral cooperation, as well as on international and regional security issues, including the current situation around the JCPOA.
In this regard, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian told European Union foreign policy chief Josep Borrell over the phone that the U.S. should abandon its excessive demands and instead take serious efforts toward reviving the landmark 2015 nuclear deal.
“There is no doubt about the Islamic Republic of Iran’s determination to reach a good, strong and lasting agreement,” Amir Abdollahian stated.