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Jaishankar in Tehran to attend Iranian President’s swearing-in ceremony

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on August 05, 2021

Meetings lined up with Iranian officials may help prepare ground for normalising economic, strategic relations

Minister of External Affairs, S Jaishankar, travelled to Tehran on Thursday to attend Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi’s swearing-in ceremony in a gesture signifying a possible strengthening of ties between the two countries.

The Ministry of External Affairs, on Thursday, stated that Jaishankar was in Tehran for the swearing-in ceremony, but did not share details of the meetings he was to hold with officials.

The Indian minister is also scheduled to call on the President during the visit, the MEA stated. As many as 115 officials from 73 countries have declared a readiness to attend the inaugural of Iran’s new President, Rapporteur of the Iranian parliament’s Presiding Board, Seyed Nezameddin Mousavi, said on Monday. These include 10 heads of state, 20 speakers of parliament, 11 foreign ministers, 10 other ministers from different countries, as well as special envoys and vice-speakers of parliaments, commission chairpersons, and Parliamentary delegations.

Jaishankar’s visit to Iran for the swearing-in ceremony, close on the heels of his short visit to the country last month on his way to Russia, may indicate that the two countries are ready to build on their past friendship that has become somewhat strained over the last few years. This was mostly due to US sanctions against the country, which were tightened during the Trump regime, forcing India to stop importing oil from Iran.

Not only has India's oil import from Iran dwindled to zero from over $10 billion annually, its exports to the country of essential items such as rice, medicines and tea, too, have been sharply hit.

With the Biden administration in the US determined to restore the nuclear deal with Iran that the Trump regime disrupted, there are chances of Iran’s economic and political relationship with other countries, including India, improving.

Raisi was elected Iran’s eighth president in June this year. He succeeds President Hassan Rouhani, who has served two four-year terms in office.

Published on August 05, 2021

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