TEHRAN, Jul. 26 (MNA) – FM Zarif has announced in meeting with Nigerian president Iran’s readiness to cooperate with Nigeria in confronting Boko Haram and other terrorist groups.
“We are willing to collaborate with Nigeria in the fight against Boko Haram as well as other terrorist groups who are enemies of Iranian and Nigerian nations,” said Iran’s Mohammad Javad Zarif during a meeting with Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari.
Zarif said Iran attaches great importance to economic relations with Nigeria and welcomes expansion of multilateral ties in all fields with the African country.
The Nigerian president, for his part, praised technical, economic and technological advancements of Iran saying “Iran does not possess single-product economy marking a great paragon for Nigeria.”
“During the recent Gas Exporting Countries Forum, I realized that Iran has been working on balanced economic and social development,” he continued and further pointed to Iran’s progress in technological areas, particularly nuclear energy while Nigeria has mainly relied on one product.
In another event, Foreign Minister Zarif met with President of the Senate of Nigeria Bukola Saraki. During his meeting with Saraki, Zarif extended Iran’s Parliament speaker’s warm greetings as well as an official invitation for a visit to Tehran to the Nigerian senior official, and underscored a serious will for strengthening and improving parliamentary cooperation between the two countries. “We are also ready to develop cooperation with Nigeria in scientific, technological and agricultural fields,” Zarif added.
Bukola Saraki, for his part, accepted the invitation and expressed hope for a visit to Iran in the near future, adding “the visit will prepare the ground for further improvement of ties between the two countries.”
He maintained that a lack of investment and technology are a major challenges for Nigeria, adding parliamentary cooperation with Iran would provide the necessary conditions for expanding relations in other areas.
The Iranian foreign minister, in his third tour of Africa, departed for Western African countries on Sunday leading a top-ranking political-economic delegation. Mohammad Javad Zarif is accompanied by 38 managers of economic firms during the visit to African countries.
During his stay in the capital city of Abuja, Zarif also met and talked with his Nigerian counterpart Geoffrey Onyeama in addition to delivering a speech at the session of economic and trade cooperation between Iran and Nigeria. Zarif and his entourage will also make visits to Ghana, Guinea Conakry and Mali as next legs of the tour.