(AhlulBayt News Agency) - Imam Khamenei received President Ilham Aliyev who was accompanied by President Hassan Rouhani of Iran Sunday evening. Imam Khamenei believed common culture and religion connected Iran and Republic of Azerbaijan during the history and both nations had extensive ethnic connections; “trade between Iran and Azerbaijan is lower than expected; the trade balance should be at least 10-fold of that of the present,” said Imam Khamenei.
Imam Khamenei also hailed Republic’s support for the Islamic Republic of Iran in international community especially in nuclear negotiations with six world powers which made the country even closer to Iran in position; “enemies are quite angry about Iran-Azerbaijan cordial relations especially the Zionist regime who had been waging misguided attempts to divide two neighbors; in addressing this malign, we should improve cordiality in relations,” Imam Khamenei emphasized.
Imam Khamenei also praised public religious feelings in Republic of Azerbaijan; “the government should rely on its own people and their religious fellow feelings; this would guarantee the existence of the state and would secure the establishment against foreign encroachments,” Imam Khamenei suggested.
Mr. Aliyev for his part shared the view with the Imam Khamenei that Iran and his country had had many common elements of culture and religion along with ethnically similar origin; “we have currently excellent relations despite such dividing efforts; during 3 past years, I have visited Iran thrice which had been totally beneficial for bilateral trade, since we have signed 20 agreements and the trade balance rose 70 per cent compared to that of the last year,” he told in the meeting.
“However, the trade balance is not satisfactory and some projects should contribute to its improvement; railroad project would serve such objectives on which both countries have been working to develop north-south transit and trade corridor through rail,” Aliyev concluded.