Tehran-based political analyst Arwin Ghaemian wrote about the “strategic alliance” between Tehran and Moscow, explaining what Iran gained from Russian President Vladimir Putin’s recent visit to Tehran for a trilateral summit with the Turkey.
Here is the text of his article:
The trilateral summit held in Tehran on July 19 between the presidents of the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Russian Federation and Turkey, the most significant outcome of which was the formulation of a road map to resolve regional crises, which led to a dramatic shift in the global order and a subsequent decline in the malevolent US hegemony in West Asia. This historic summit illustrates that due to Iran’s unique geopolitical position, Tehran has become a hub for diplomatic negotiations to address regional and international crises.
Strengthening economic, military and political cooperation between Russia and Iran was one of the main priorities of this summit.
Iran and Russia have enjoyed strong cooperation over the past decades, and their anti-Western political ideologies have helped develop common political-economic strategies. It appears that a budding alliance between Tehran and Moscow to thwart US-NATO hegemony has been bolstered by the outbreak of conflict in Ukraine and the imposition of harsh Western sanctions against Russia’s energy industry.
Since the start of hostilities in Ukraine, it was the first time that Russian strongman Vladimir Putin left the kingdom of the republics of the former Soviet Union.
By choosing Tehran as the destination for his one-day visit to the Middle East, Putin is explicitly signaling to his Western adversaries that Russia is diplomatically isolated and is trying to strengthen its position on the eastern front by strengthening its relations with Iran, the traditional ally of Russia.
Revitalizing Iran’s oil and gas industry
One of Iran’s biggest gains from the Tehran trilateral conference, observers say, was the offer of a $40 billion investment deal from Russian state-owned Gazprom in Iran. .
Under the terms of the preliminary agreement, Gazprom will assist the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) in the development of oil and gas fields and the construction of LNG pipelines. In addition, the deal covers a $10 billion project in the Kish and North Pars gas fields in the Persian Gulf, as well as a massive $15 billion program to increase pressure in South Pars, which is the largest gas field shared by Iran and Qatar.
Mohsen Khojasteh-Mehr, Director of NIOC, described the memorandum as “one of the biggest foreign investments in the history of Iran’s oil industry”.
“The long-term cooperation between Iran and Russia is very beneficial for both nations” (…). There are agreements and contracts between the two countries, especially in the oil and gas sectors, which must be pursued and fully implemented, Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Sayyid Ali Khamenei said in a statement. highlighting the energy cooperation between Tehran and Moscow.
Iran’s ascendancy will grow in Syria
Given that Ukraine has become an existential priority for Russia and, therefore, there is a critical need for Russian troops and equipment in Ukraine’s entrenched conflict, there will ultimately be a military vacuum in Syria. , which Moscow does not want the United States to fill.
At last Tuesday’s summit in Tehran, Vladimir Putin was reported to have endorsed Iran’s continued military presence east of the Euphrates. This strategically key area has long been of utmost importance to Iran and its Syrian Arab Army.
According to experts, with the strengthening of Iran in eastern Syria and the departure of the American occupying forces, the reopening of the Iran-Iraq-Syria corridor would probably lead to the connection of Iran to the Mediterranean Sea . In other words, if realized, this massive initiative will resurrect the ancient Silk Road, which will certainly have financial benefits for all West Asian countries and the international community.
However, Tehran and Moscow have already expressed their vehement opposition to such an invasion.
For years, Russia had taken a relatively passive approach to frequent Turkish incursions into northeast Syria. However, with Turkey’s anti-Russian stance and the sale of Baykar Bayraktar TB2 drones to Kyiv, the Kremlin ultimately chose to pursue a tough stance towards Ankara.
During his meeting with Iran’s Supreme Leader, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was again warned by Ayatollah Khamenei that any military offensive against Syrian territorial integrity would undoubtedly be detrimental to Turkey and the whole region and urged the Turkish President to settle the crisis diplomatically.
Since the start of the armed insurgency in Syria in 2011, Russia and Iran have backed Syria’s democratically elected government, while Turkey backs the hardline opposition in the northern province of Idlib.
Russia and Iran: partners in dedollarization
Iran and Russia will soon sign a strategic cooperation treaty, expanding their cooperation in the banking and financial sector and abandoning the use of the dollar to denominate their trade, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said in an interview. with an Iranian television channel, before Putin’s visit to Tehran.
Nasser Kandil, a prominent Lebanese commentator, argues that the rising international economic powers known as BRICS, led by Russia, China and India, and the impending admission of Iran are a great achievement. The BRICS will support the growth and development of independent economies and increase the volume of investment and trade by replacing the dollar and euro with their own national currencies to make US sanctions completely ineffective.
Despite the tragic civilian casualties, Ayatollah Khamenei’s unequivocal support for the Russian special military operation in Ukraine against vicious NATO encroachments was a clear indication to the US-led Western bloc that the relationship Moscow-Tehran is metamorphosing into a true strategic partnership, as the war in Ukraine has changed Russia’s economic outlook. Today, Moscow is increasingly isolating itself from Western markets. Thus, the Kremlin considers Iran as an indispensable economic partner and seeks to use Iranian expertise to circumvent unilateral American sanctions by substituting the rial and the ruble for the dollar.
Today the Kremlin accelerated its efforts to move away from the dollar after the United States and its allies imposed unprecedented sanctions to punish Russia for its military activities in Ukraine. Putin said he discussed the increased use of national currencies in trade with the Iranian leader.
North-South Corridor: Iran, a lifeline for the Russian economy?
In light of the fact that the Western bloc has imposed an embargo on Russian sea and air trade, Iran will be a viable channel for the passage of Russian goods, as the shortest route for Russian goods to reach major ports from the Persian Gulf east by Iranian Railway to the strategic port city of Bandar Abbas.
It is obvious that the North-South Corridor will provide huge transit revenue for the Iranian state coffer.
During the Russian President‘s recent visit to Tehran and his meeting with Ayatollah Khamenei, the Russian President stressed the importance of completing the Rasht-Astara railway and operating the north-south corridor.