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Iran says ‘misunderstandings’ with Azerbaijan resolved

Top diplomats of Iran, Azerbaijan hold telephonic talk, agree to improve ties.

Iran’s foreign minister Saturday said Tehran and Baku have overcome “misunderstandings” that had developed between the two countries in recent months.

Following a telephonic talk with his Azerbaijani counterpart Jeyhun Bayramov, Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, in a veiled reference to Israel, said some “parties” have been trying to create fissures in Iran’s relations with Azerbaijan.

“Now the two countries can move toward expansion of bilateral cooperation,” Iran’s top diplomat said in a statement issued by the government’s information department.

The statement said Bayramov also reaffirmed his country’s commitment to improving ties with Tehran while emphasizing that any misunderstanding should be resolved in an “environment of friendship”.

Relations between the two neighboring countries soured in recent months, with Tehran alleging the presence of Israeli troops on its border with Azerbaijan, and Baku accusing Iran of illegally sending trucks to the Nagorno-Karabakh region.

Recent tensions were sparked by comments made by Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev in an interview with Anadolu Agency on Sept. 28, accusing Iran of violating Azerbaijan’s sovereignty by hiding the identity of trucks heading to Armenia.

The detention of two Iranian drivers further escalated tensions between the two sides. The drivers were freed after a month following high-level negotiations.

In their talk on Saturday, the top diplomats of Iran and Azerbaijan also discussed bilateral trade relations and the functioning of the joint economic commission of the two countries.

Amir-Abdollahian reiterated Iran’s support to the 3+3 format for the Caucasus region, comprising three Caucasian states – Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia – alongside three neighboring states – Russia, Turkey, and Iran.

Bayramov, in a statement posted on Twitter, said he wished his Iranian counterpart “strong health and speedy recovery from COVID-19” and “restated our commitment to further development of mutual cooperation and contribution to peace & prosperity in the region.”

Iran shares a 132-kilometer (82 miles) border with Azerbaijan, which has been a source of tension between them in recent months.

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