The issue of Iran’s relations with Russia has always been a point of serious debates among the political as well as analytical circles worldwide. The close partnership shaped between Tehran and Moscow since 2015, further intensified the debates. In a comprehensive interview, a top Iranian diplomat talks about the place of Russia in Iran’s foreign policy.
کد خبر: ۸۴۵۱۶۶
تاریخ انتشار: ۳۰ مهر ۱۳۹۷ - ۲۰:۵۲ 22 October 2018

Tabnak – The issue of Iran’s relations with Russia has always been a point of serious debates among the political as well as analytical circles worldwide. The close partnership shaped between Tehran and Moscow since 2015, further intensified the debates. In a comprehensive interview, a top Iranian diplomat talks about the place of Russia in Iran’s foreign policy.

Asked about the nature of Iran’s relationship with Russia, Hossein Jaberi Ansari, a top aide to the Iranian foreign minister, told Press TV on October 10 that the Islamic Republic has since its foundation defined itself as nationally independent of any global power but has recognized and duly employed “partnerships” with countries within the framework of its national interests.

He meticulously differentiated between a “strategic alliance” — which he said was an obsolete practice of the Cold War era and never in the policy toolkit of the Islamic Republic — and “strategic partnership.”

“Russia is not our strategic ally; neither are we Russia’s strategic ally, in the sense that was very popular particularly in the bipolar era [of international politics], in the era of blocs and great […] alliances,” he said.

“We don’t have a strategic alliance with Russia, but we have strategic partnership [with it], in specific projects, based on specific mutual interests — and in spite of the differences we have [with Moscow] — and we can continue to have [such partnership] in the future, too,” Jaberi Ansari said.

He said Iran “exited the framework of alliances and affiliations with powers in the West and the East” after the Islamic Revolution of 1979.

The Islamic Republic, he said, has achieved its national independence “at great cost” and will not let that independence be dented in any shape or form. “Neither in its relations with Russia, nor in its relations with any other power will Iran step toward violating its own national independence,” he said.

But Iran highly values its relationship with Russia for a number of factual reasons, he said.

“Russia is our neighbor to the north, [and] Russia is a large neighbor and a global power. These are facts,” Jaberi Ansari said. “As such, the same rule that governs our relations with all our neighbors applies to Russia all the more.”

“No [Iranian] administration or politician can afford not to insert into its/his calculations the fact that Russia is our globally powerful neighbor.”

In his official capacity as senior assistant to the Iranian foreign minister on special political affairs, Jaberi Ansari has been working with Russia — and Turkey — in a peace process for Syria.

Iran and Russia, allies of the Syrian government, have been giving Damascus advisory military help in coordination with one another. Russia has also been carrying out an aerial bombardment campaign in Syria on behalf of the Syrian government.

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