Russia and Iran will beef up political cooperation against the backdrop of the Vienna agreement although some unresolved problems remain, among them the delivery of S-300 air defense missile systems to Tehran, Rajab Safarov, Director of the Center for Contemporary Iranian Studies, has said.
"The political dimension of Russia-Iran cooperation has not reduced after the Vienna deal, rather it will be growing," he wrote in a comment after the Moscow negotiations between Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and his Iranian counterpart Javad Zarif held on Aug. 17.
Yet nothing has been said about the delivery of S-300 systems to Iran, the expert said. "It seems the process has yet to reach a quality level," he added.
"At the same time, the sides explicitly expressed their goal of broadest military-technological cooperation in the context of new threats and challenges in the Caspian and other regions that seriously concern the interests of both nations," Safarov said.
In the opinion of the expert, Zarif most likely brought a number of Syria settlement proposals to Moscow. "Javad Zarif brought to his meeting with Lavrov a plan of Iranian initiatives for resolving the Syria crisis and a part of them is likely to be presented at the upcoming session of the UN General Assembly in New York City in September of this year," he wrote.
Safarov pointed to another important aspect of the bilateral meeting: yesterday's claims by U.S. representatives about an alleged visit to Moscow by Gen. Qasem Soleimani, head of the Al-Quds service included in the UN Security Council sanctions list. Safarov believes this is an attempt by the United States to control the fulfillment of the Vienna agreement.
"The appearance of such false stories is not accidental: the number of stove-piping reports accusing Iran and Russia of violations of the Vienna pact will keep growing. That will happen not only because of the domestic political rivalry in the United States around the deal with Iran but also because of the quite understandable wish of Washington to play the leading role in everything that concerns the Vienna pact and the place of Tehran in the international community," the expert said.
He said such 'stove-piping reports' would be used to influence Tehran.
Lavrov and Zarif negotiated in Moscow on Aug. 18.
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