Deeper Ties on Agenda as Iranian, Turkish Leaders to Meet

Six agreements will be signed next week during a visit to Ankara by Iranian President Hassan Rohani.

Iranian President Hasan Rohani.
Iranian President Hasan Rohani. AFP

Turkey and Iran are expected to sign a range of political, economic and cultural agreements during the visit to Ankara next week of Iranian President Hassan Rohani, according to the Turkish newspaper Hurriyet.

It will be the first official visit to Turkey by an Iranian president since Ali Akbar Hashimi Rafsanjani’s visit in 1996.

Rohani is expected to hold bilateral talks with Turkish President Abdullah Gul and he will co-chair the High-Level Strategic Cooperation Council meeting with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

The council meeting, in which several ministers from both sides will participate, is expected to set a goal of increasing the volume of bilateral trade to $30 billion. In order to achieve that target, the two countries will intensify cooperation in energy, transportation, tourism, industry and other areas.

According to diplomatic sources, the two countries will sign at least six agreements on June 9.

Topping the other bilateral issues to be discussed will be Syria, on which the sides differ radically. Iran is one of the most prominent supporters of Syrian President Bashar Assad's government, while Turkey has actively pushed for Assad’s overthrow.

Syria was discussed by Rohani and Erdogan during the latter's visit to Tehran in January, though neither country has changed its position.