Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei has called for independent states to step up their cooperation regardless of disruptive attempts by arrogant powers.
“Independent countries must close ranks as much as possible and increase their cooperation in spite of disruptive acts by certain arrogant powers,” Ayatollah Khamenei said in a meeting with visiting South African President Jacob Zuma in Tehran on Sunday.
“The interests of independent countries lie in increasing cooperation in different sectors and the obstacles certain powers are throwing up against such cooperation must be countered,” the Leader said.
Ayatollah Khamenei said Iran holds a positive and constructive view of South Africa, adding: “The relations between Iran and South Africa are very warm and the two countries’ mutual cooperation at global assemblies is very helpful and effective, but economic and trade ties must be also enhanced in proportion to the two countries’ potentialities.”
For his part, Zuma echoed Ayatollah Khamenei’s remarks about the necessity of cooperation between independent nations and said certain powers are stymieing closer relations between independent nations under fabricated pretexts.
He noted that South Africa had constantly opposed the sanctions the Western governments imposed on Iran. Zuma said there is now proper ground for cooperation between the two countries, adding that his country will restart economic and trade ties with Iran.
Zuma also said that the Islamic Republic can set an example for world countries to follow in resolving its issues in the face of hostilities.
The meeting was also attended by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani.
Heading a 180-member politico-economic delegation, Zuma arrived in Tehran on Sunday at the invitation of President Rouhani to discuss ways to strengthen relations between the two countries.
At a joint press conference earlier in the day, Iranian and South African presidents called for the strengthening of “intelligence and political” cooperation in a genuine campaign against the serious threats of violence and terrorism.
Meantime, Iran’s Research Institute of Petroleum Industry (RIPI) and South Africa’s national oil company PetroSA signed a memorandum for cooperation.