KRISHNA MEETS IRANIAN SPEAKER LARIJANI
Tehran, May 16: India on Sunday sought to put behind its IAEA vote against Iran as it sought to strengthen its ties with the energy rich Persian Gulf nation.
India’s External Affairs Minister S M Krishna met Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani, the third most powerful leader in the Islamic Republic, to further bilateral cooperation.
“India has always had very cordial relations with Iran. We indeed look up to strengthening our relations (with Iran),” Krishna said in his opening remarks at the meeting with Larijani.
New Delhi wants to deepen energy and trade ties with Iran, which it views as an important ally in the region.
“We are looking forward to strengthening our relations (with Iran),” Krishna said, adding though his visit to Tehran was to attend the G-15 Summit tomorrow, the purpose was mostly bilateral.
India had voted for an IAEA resolution censuring Iran in November last year at Vienna. Subsequently, Iran had written a “nasty” letter to India protesting its action.
Admiring India’s rapid economic growth, Larijani said Tehran saw India as an important trading partner. “We have a very cordial and friendly relations with Iran,” he said pointing to the USD 40 billion bilateral trade which Tehran wants to increase further.
Krishna, who is on a four-day visit to Iran, later visited Tehran’s only gurdwara and met representatives of people of Indian origin in the country.
The gurdwara, only the second in the Islamic nation, also doubles up to host community events like National Day celebrations. Adjacent to the gurudwara is a Kendriya Vidyalaya run by the Indian Embassy in Iran.
Local Sikh community, which had 80-100 families in Tehran, requested the External Affairs Minister to consider granting PIO cards to people of Indian origin who have now become natural citizen of Iran so as to aid them in their visits India.
“We will purusue it from our end in Delhi,” Krishna assured the leaders.
Lastupdate on : Sun, 16 May 2010 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sun, 16 May 2010 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Mon, 17 May 2010 00:00:00 IST
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