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Iran, Afghan defense ministers agree to develop military cooperation

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Kabul, June 18, IRNA -- Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier-General Ahmad Vahidi conferred on Saturday with his Afghan counterpart General Abdul Raheem Wardak on ways to expand military cooperation between the two countries.

The Afghan minister said he was pleased with meeting his Iranian counterpart.

“We are meeting the defense minister of a country which has helped Afghanistan very much during the Afghan resistance to foreign occupation and reconstruction era,” he said in reference to Iranian assistance to the Afghan people fighting occupation of the former Soviet Union in 1970s.

Afghan people, their government and their armed forces thank the Islamic Republic of Iran for its sincere assistance, he said.

Afghanistan has resisted to foreign aggressors for a long time and the only way to help reconstruct the country is through revival of the country’s domestic capabilities, said the Afghan defense minister.

Afghanistan seeks freedom and independence; he said adding that the role of its neighbors such as Iran is very remarkable to this effect.

Wardak said that Iran and Afghanistan should continue with cooperation in various fields mainly in their campaign against terrorism, drug trafficking and organized crimes.

Ties between Iran and Afghanistan are beyond diplomatic relations, Wardak said adding that the two sides have always backed each other in ups and downs.

'Presence of alien forces is the root-cause of instability and disputes in the region,' said the Iranian minister.

The Afghan nation would attain development through their national will and firm determination, he said.

Vahidi said that the cultural and religious affinity and common language have prepared the ground for expansion of relations and cooperation between the two countries.

This is the first ever visit of the Iranian defense minister to Afghanistan after triumph of the Islamic Revolution.

The Iranian minister is scheduled to confer with a number of senior Afghan officials as well as the country’s president during his stay.

Islamic Republic News Agency/IRNA NewsCode: 30437197

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