Iran, China Eye Military Cooperation


Iran, China Eye Military Cooperation

Aug 18, 2005

Iran received a military delegation from China, paving the way for cooperation in the defense field, citing Brigadier General Nasser Mohammadi-Far, the commander of the Iranian army's ground forces.

The Chinese delegation is in Iran for talks on "developing military relations, deepening bilateral ties and paving the way for military cooperation," the state-run Iranian news agency said. The press office of China's Ministry of Defense in Beijing declined to comment on the delegation's visit.

"Our mutual enemies possess advanced military technology, and undoubtedly they would rely on this technology in any possible future wars," said Mohammadi-Far. "Therefore, it seems necessary that both Iran and China upgrade their defense and military technology."

China is Iran's third-largest export market for crude oil, and ties between the two countries have strengthened in recent years as Iran started granting stakes in the development of its oil and gas fields. Iran, under U.S. economic sanctions and at odds with both the U.S. and the Europe Union over its nuclear program, is increasingly turning to the East for new markets, opening its economy in return.