Iran, Turkey speakers discuss water shares in Aras, ties

TEHRAN, Jan. 10 (MNA) – Iranian and Turkish parliament speakers explored ways to increase border trade and discussed the Iran water share in the northern Aras river among other issues in a meeting on the sidelines of APA meeting.

Iranian parliament speaker Mohammad Bagher Ghalibaf held a meeting with Turkey’s Parliament Speaker Mustafa Sentop on the sidelines of the Asian Parliamentary Assembly (APA) meeting in Antalya, Turkey.

In the meeting, Ghalibaf congratulated Turkey on the successful hosting of the 13th APA meeting and described the bilateral relations between the two nations as growing.

The Iranian speaker added that the two nations need to enhance their bilateral trade to a higher level to meet the expectations.

Referring to the important issue of Aras River and the need to respect Iran's water share of the river, he said, "There are concerns regarding the issue of water in the Aras River, some of which are related to the environment of the region, and a meeting was held between the ministers of energy and the agriculture of the two countries has been held and a second meeting should be held, and this is one of the issues that can be of great importance for both countries, people and of course the environment because it has caused many problems for the lower parts of the Aras River."

Regarding the issue of border trade on both sides, the Iranian speaker said "The issue of border markets and border exchanges is one of the demands of the people and one of the priorities of the parliamentary friendship groups."

Ghalibaf called for taking further other steps to increase border trade between the two countries, saying the trade on the border can boost the region's economy and border security.

He went on to say that the bilateral and trilateral talks between Iran, Turkey and Azerbaijan can be important in resolving the existing problems at different levels for the benefit of the progress and development of the countries and the entire region.

Mustafa Sentop, for his part, welcomed and supported the proposals made in the meeting by the Iranian speaker.

"In relation to the Aras River issue, I will conduct the necessary discussions for the fair supply of water shares..." the Turkish speaker said.

As regards the issue of border markets problems, Sentop said, "The issue of these markets is also an important issue, and as you know, the parliamentary friendship groups of the two countries are also following up on this issue, and I will also follow up on it with the trade minister of my country."

MNA/5678931

News Code 195995

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