RIA Novosti, Russia
Dec 3 2004


YEREVAN, December 3 (RIA Novosti) - Armenia's stability and economic
development are highly important for Iran, Iranian ambassador to
Armenia Ali Reza Haqiqyan said on Friday at the meeting with Armenian
Defence Minister Serzh Sarkisyan, Secretary of the National Security
Council under the president.

A serious progress was reached within the framework of
Iranian-Armenian economic cooperation, particularly just-begun
construction of the Iran-Armenia gas pipeline and commissioning of
the second high-power transmission line, the minister's press
secretary Seiran Shakhsuvaryan said.

The ambassador noted that the latest meetings at the official level
have generated new ideas for economic cooperation, such as the
building of a railway between Iran and Armenia, as well as the supply
of Iranian oil products (it is crucial for Armenia in view of its no
simple relations with Azerbaijan and Turkey).

The Iranian ambassador has promised assistance in arranging Farsi
classes at Armenia's Vazgen Sarkisyan Military Institute.

The Armenian defence minister noted that, if this project would be
implemented, the Military Institute would be Armenia's second
advanced-Farsi centre after the Yerevan State University.

As regards programmes intended under the Armenia-NATO partnership,
Sarkisyan reiterated that membership in the North Atlantic Alliance
is not on the foreign policy agenda of Armenia.

The sides also discussed matters of regional security, peaceful
settlement of the Nagorny-Karabakh conflict.