Iran, China negotiating a 25-year ‘strategic accord’

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif | File photo: AP / Vincent Thian

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Zarif says Tehran and Beijing will release the details of the deal when it is finalized.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said that Tehran has been negotiating a 25-year accord with China, terms of which will be announced once a deal is struck, French news agency AFP reported Sunday.

“With confidence and conviction, we are negotiating a 25-year strategic accord with China,” Iran’s top diplomat said during a session of parliament.

China is also a key market for Iranian crude exports, which, however, has been dampened by US sanctions imposed after Washington’s 2018 withdrawal from a nuclear deal with Tehran under the leadership of US President Donald Trump.

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An accord with China has been a hot topic on Iranian social media since populist ex-president Mahmud Ahmadinejad last month denounced negotiations underway with a foreign country.

But Zarif, who came under fire over the 2015 nuclear accord which Iranian conservatives had opposed, insisted there was “nothing secret” about the China deal.

The nation would be informed “when an accord has been concluded”, he said, adding it had already been made public in January 2016 when Chinese President Xi Jinping visited Tehran.

(Israel Hayom / i24 News).



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