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News number: 8712210434

11:53 | 2009-03-11

Politics

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Leader Meets with Azeri, Pakistani Presidents

TEHRAN (FNA)- Supreme Leader of Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei said Iran and Azerbaijan must make every effort to strengthen relations.



In a meeting with the Azeri President Ilham Aliyev on Tuesday, the Leader pointed to the cordial Tehran-Baku relations and said both sides should not allow Israeli and US incitements to strain the two countries ties.

According to press tv, The remarks came a day after an Azeri lawmaker revealed that the Pentagon was interfering in Azerbaijan's defense issues by drawing up plans to protect the country in the event of an attack.

Aliyev, who is in Tehran for an Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) summit, said for his part that despite the many threats Iran and Azerbaijan are faced with, Baku would never fold under Western pressures nor allow any country to negatively influence the relations with Tehran.

In another meeting with visiting Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari pm Tuesday, the Leader expressed hope that the two countries' joint projects -- the IPI pipeline and the Iran-Pakistan-Turkey railroad -- would become operational in the near future.

President Zardari, who is also in Tehran for the ECO summit, said for his part that the completion of Iran and Pakistan's joint projects would benefit the interests of the future generations of both countries.

In response to the Leader's concerns about increasing religious extremism in some parts of Pakistan and US interference in the issue, Zardari said that "while a country can be occupied and a nation can be weakened, it is impossible to annihilate a nation."