RNA - "Today, there is no doubt that the Islamic Republic of Iran is a very important and influential country in the region, and this great nation will not be defeated by the conspiracies of the enemies, especially the US and their embargo," President Rouhani said on Thursday before leaving Tehran for Azerbaijan to participate in the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) summit.
"In these circumstances, it is more important for us to attend such summits than ever before and I am pleased that the Islamic Republic of Iran has been more active in regional unions and treaties in recent years."
Stating that Iran has recently signed an interim agreement with the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) and attended their summit in Armenia and attended the ECO, Rouhani said that Iran has always been active in the Organization of the Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and Non-Aligned Movement and currently we are actively involved in these organizations.
Rouhani pointed out that in recent years "we have started trilateral activities with other countries in the region, saying, "A summit on the Astana Process between Iran, Turkey and Russia; a summit between Iran, Azerbaijan, and Russia; another one between Iran, India, and Afghanistan; and other summits that we attend at the regional level are among these."
The President emphasized, "All these summits and meetings and Iran's presence in them are based on the view that the Islamic Republic of Iran should have a more active presence in the region and around the world. Our national interests and security in relation to other countries will be better served this way."
Referring to the 18th Non-Aligned Movement Summit in the Republic of Azerbaijan, Rouhani said, "I am going to both deliver a speech and have bilateral meetings with the heads of states participating in the Summit".
He stated, "Iran's relations with the Republic of Azerbaijan have become so much closer during the past six years."
The Iranian president referred to Iran, Azerbaijan and Iraq as the three Shiite countries in the region, adding, "Relations with Azerbaijan, as a friendly and neighborly country, are of great importance to us, and we have deep historical and cultural ties with each other, and our relations are moving toward strategic ones."
President Rouhani added, "We have signed very important agreements with Azerbaijan on the Caspian Sea that should be implemented and put into operation, and we have started good cooperation in the field of oil and gas exploration and transit, as well as the Astara-Astara railway connection".
According to Fars News Agency, the Iranian president emphasized that this transit route is very important for our relations with Azerbaijan, Russia, Europe, the Caucasus as well as for other countries that are active in this field, adding, "In the field of industrial, pharmaceutical, medical and scientific relations with Azerbaijan, we have very good relations."
"The second day of the visit will be mainly with NAM member states," he noted.
Elsewhere, Rouhani underlined that in the past six years the relations between Iran and the Republic of Azerbaijan have been improved a lot and are moving toward becoming "strategic."
"This visit is taking place at the official invitation of the President of Azerbaijan (Ilham Aliev) to attend the 18th NAM Summit," he said.
Highlighting Iran's more active presence in international summits, he said, "While Americans are acting unilaterally and want to interfere in all parts of the world and other countries, and their hostility towards the great Iranian nation is clearer than ever, we must attend all regional and international summits and international organizations more actively."
"Americans have sought to isolate the Islamic Republic of Iran, but thank God, the Islamic Republic of Iran's position among nations and states all over the world is being promoted day by day," Rouhani added.
President Rouhani will attend the 18th summit of NAM heads of states on Friday.
NAM, an international organization with 120 member states and 21 observer countries, represents nearly two-thirds of the UN members. It is considered as not formally aligned with or against any major power bloc.