Construction of Iran-Armenia gas pipeline to start this year

Apr 14, 2004 02:00 AM

On 12-13 April Armenian Foreign Minister Vardan Oskanyan, who was in Iran on an official visit, had meetings with the secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council, Hasan Rowhani, Information Minister Ali Yunesi, Foreign Minister Kamal Kharrazi and First Vice-President Mohammad Reza Aref.
After the meetings Vardan Oskanyan said that the problem of the Iran-Armenia gas pipeline had been discussed during the talks with top Iranian officials.
"The authorities of Armenia and Iran are determined to construct the gas pipeline. We hope that during the visit by Iran's oil minister, [Bizhan] Namdar-Zanganeh, to Yerevan, the final version of the document will be signed and we shall start construction this year," Oskanyan said.

The head of the Iranian Foreign Ministry's CIS department, Mehdi Safari, said that Iran's oil minister would visit Yerevan soon. Safari said that the final document on construction of the gas pipeline would be signed in Yerevan. The Armenian foreign minister mentioned that construction of the gas pipeline would give a new quality to Armenian-Iranian relations and would be of serious significance for the region.
"As for bilateral economic programmes, we have discussed the problems of the Kadzharan tunnel, construction of the power plant on the Araks [Araz] river and the transit problems between the two countries," Oskanyan said.

Regional problems, including Karabakh, were also discussed during the meetings. During his meeting with the first vice-president of Iran, Mohammad Reza Aref, Oskanyan noted that, unlike Turkey, Iran had a balanced position in the region.
"We want Iran to be more involved in regional processes, and construction of the Iran-Armenia gas pipeline will increase Tehran's role in the region," Oskanyan said.

Source: Armenian News Network/Groong
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