Monday, 20 May 2002

AZERBAIJAN\'S PRESIDENT ENDS OFFICIAL VISIT TO IRAN

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By empty (5/20/2002 issue of the CACI Analyst)

On 19 May, the second day of his official visit to Tehran, Heidar Aliev met with Iranian religious leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who paid tribute to the historic ties between the two countries but warned against interference in the Caspian by unnamed \"big powers\" which, he claimed, do not want to see conflicts in the region solved. Aliev for his part said that Iran should participate in talks on resolving the Karabakh conflict. On 20 May, Aliev and Khatami signed an accord on the principles and framework of bilateral cooperation; 10 further agreements on cooperation in various spheres were also signed.
On 19 May, the second day of his official visit to Tehran, Heidar Aliev met with Iranian religious leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who paid tribute to the historic ties between the two countries but warned against interference in the Caspian by unnamed \"big powers\" which, he claimed, do not want to see conflicts in the region solved. Aliev for his part said that Iran should participate in talks on resolving the Karabakh conflict. On 20 May, Aliev and Khatami signed an accord on the principles and framework of bilateral cooperation; 10 further agreements on cooperation in various spheres were also signed. Aliev said at a joint press conference that the two countries have succeeded in narrowing the differences between their countries\' views on the legal status of the Caspian Sea. Upon his return to Baku later on 20 May, Aliev characterized his visit as a \"success,\" and as the start of a new phase in bilateral relations. He denied that Azerbaijan had agreed to suspend exploitation of the Alov and Sharq Caspian oil fields of which Iran claims ownership. Aliev also said that he turned down a proposal by his Iranian hosts to visit Tabriz, which has a large Azerbaijani population, and that the opening of an Azerbaijani consulate in that city, which Iran has for years postponed, was not discussed. (CNA)
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