What Is Belarus-Iran Axis Of Coop. Amid Lukasheno’s Visit To Tehran?

Wednesday 15 March 2023 - 20:13

ISWNews Analysis Group: President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko met with Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei and President Ebrahim Raisi, and the two sides signed eight memoranda of understanding (MoUs) during his third visit to capital Tehran.

Kukashenko arrived in Tehran on Monday (March 13, 2023) ahead of the 30th anniversary of initiating bilateral ties between Belarus and Iran. His two-day visit was made at an official invitation by his Iranian counterpart.

Both presidents held talks on the sidelines of the 16th summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, in September 2022. They underlined on the need for preparing a roadmap to develop bilateral collaborations. The cooperation is in line with both nations’ determination to strengthen economic, trade, transportation, agriculture, culture and art exchanges as prisoners swap and an executive document on the 30th anniversary of establishing diplomatic ties.

Following the signing ceremony of the MoUs, President Kukashenko along with President Raisi met with Imam Khamenei, when the Supreme Leader stated that the cooperation capacities between the two countries are higher than the current level.

The Supreme Leader underlined that given the determination of both sides to implement agreements, the level of relationship should improve significantly, and that Belarus and Iran enjoy numerous commonalities, including the fact that both nations are facing the bullying sanctions by the US and certain Western states. The countries, which have been targeted by the US-imposed sanctions, should cooperate with each other and create a joint front in order to defuse the sanction policy and we believe that the job can be done, Imam Khamenei noted, adding if those countries that the US imposed sanctions on them use each other’s capacity, the benefit of the cooperation will be abundant for all sides.

The United States started imposing sanctions on Iran from the onset of the victory of the Islamic Revolution, and Washington imposed the ruthless sanctions on the country over past 12 years, the Leader said, noting that the harsh sanctions made Iran understand its own capabilities and internal might; so, during the time when Iran was suffering from the sanctions, the ground was paved for many progresses in the country and Iran could achieve wonderful advances in different arenas, including in science and technology, in medicine and biology, in aerospace, in nuclear technology and nanotech.

According to the Leader, the grounds for cooperation between Belarus and Iran in scientific and technological development as well as in trade and political activities are available at international communities, and in the implementation of the International North–South Transport Corridor along with Russia; thus, both Minsk and Tehran should try to implement it.

The agreements and talks should not be left behind in meetings, but they should be implemented through special follow-up and identified timing, Ayatollah Khamenei said, arguing that spirituality can play the role of a motivator for nations.

Lukashenko, for his part, expressed satisfaction with his meeting with the Supreme Leader, saying that he came to Iran to assure he is determined to open a new page to expand bilateral ties, and that with the support and cooperation by the Iranian president, all agreements will be implemented in due timing and special follow-ups.

Iran achieved wonderful experiences and progresses during the sanction period, and we believe if the embargo circumstance is being used properly, it can be an opportunity for advancement, the Belarusian president said, adding that his goal of the visit to Iran is close acquaintance with Iran’s achievements.

The current hard situation at international arena has uncovered real and unreal friends for us, and we are determined to pursue particular cooperation with real friends, he argued.

Considering the remarks made by the Belarusian and Iranian officials as well as released data by Eastern media outlets, the probable axis of collaborations between Belarus and Iran can include the following points:

-The adoption of joint stances by both countries in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), which will be effective to increase economic exchanges between the two nations and other independent states. Imam Khamenei underlined the need for forming an economic-military alliance between anti-Western countries, when he received the Belarusian president. The idea can be proposed at next sessions of the SCO and EAEU, and the member states can pursue a roadmap to form such an alliance.

-The emphasis on Belarus’ usage of the capacity of the International North–South Transport Corridor especially inside Iran’s territory. The corridor can be very helpful for the economy of the East European states, including Belarus, that do not have access to international waters.

-The export of industrial, medical and other equipment from Iran to Belarus. Given the fact that Minsk is still grappling with the negative healthcare aftermaths of 1986 explosion at the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine, the Iran-made medical equipment can find appropriate market in Belarus.

-The sale of arms and ammunition such as Iran-made drones and missiles to Belarus. The experience of Russia-Ukraine war has shown the leaders in Belarus and other states, which are suffering from the sanctions imposed by the US and Europe, that the tension between the East and the West fronts can drag them into a battle field. Thus, the Iranian weaponries, which have been tested in different conflicts, can play a key role in guaranteeing their security.

-The import of livestock, grains and chemical fertilizers from Belarus.

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