Sunday

25th Sep 2022

Greek PM strenghtens ties with Iran

  • Tsipras (l) met with Iranian leader Khamenei (Photo: Greek PM office)

Greece and Iran pledged on Monday (8 February) to strengthen the political and economic cooperation between their two countries in a series of meetings where Iran's geopolitical importance was emphasised.

During a two-day visit to Ispahan and Tehran with business leaders, Greek prime minister Alexis Tsipras said Greece wanted to become "an energy, economic and trade bridge between Iran and European Union”. He was the first EU leader to go to Iran since the lifting of UN sanctions last month.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Become an expert on Europe

Get instant access to all articles — and 20 years of archives. 14-day free trial.

... or subscribe as a group

A few days before the visit, Hellenic Petroleum and the National Iranian Oil Company agreed on the first oil deal for Iran since the sanctions were lifted. In Tehran, the Iranian oil minister said Iran planned to sell 300,000 barrels per day to Europeans.

Iran held discussions with the Greek delegation on more cooperation in fields such as the financial sector, medicine and health, culture and education, infrastructure, transport and the construction industry.

The two countries signed a memorandum for political deliberations and a roadmap for the improvement of bilateral cooperation.

“This visit can be a good start for increasing exchanges and long-term cooperation between the two countries," Iranian leader Ali Khamenei said in a meeting with Tsipras, praising Greece for its "independent policy and line".

Tsipras, who has tried to develop ties with countries like Russia and China, for his part, praised the Iranian people's "determining role in history and also in defending their ideals and independence".

Terrorism

Faced with a massive influx of refugees coming from Syria or Afghanistan through Turkey, the Greek PM also said in a meeting with Iranian president Hassan Rouhani that Iran could "play a role in stabilising the wider region from Afghanistan to the Mediterranean".

The Iranian president, who is trying to give his country international respectability despite its support of Syrian president Bashar Al-Assad, said his country was ready to help in the fight against the Islamic State (IS) group.

“Iran is ready to expand its cooperation with the EU and Greece,” Rouhani said.

Tsipras' visit to Iran comes ahead of a planned visit by EU experts to explore energy ties, and after a trip by Rouhani to Italy and France, where several commercial contracts, including on energy and one for more than 100 Airbus aircraft, were signed.

EU explores business deals in Iran

The lifting of sanctions against Iran after it complied with an international nuclear deal could open oil, gas, and industrial markets for EU companies.

EU visit to Iran designed to reassure banks

High-level EU trip designed to reassure international banks on doing business with Islamic Republic. Officials said won’t have time to meet human rights activists.

Opinion

How to apply the Nuremberg model for Russian war crimes

A Special Tribunal on Russian war crimes in Ukraine must be convened, because no permanent or existing international judicial institution is endowed with jurisdiction over Russian high-ranking officials, writes the head of the Ukraine delegation to the Council of Europe.

Opinion

Losing on the Ukrainian battlefield will not unseat Putin

Notwithstanding the remarkable Ukrainian advances, a Russian defeat would not necessarily translate into regime change in Moscow. It is likely Putin will try to spin his military setbacks as evidence of the existential threat facing Russia.

News in Brief

  1. More Russians now crossing Finnish land border
  2. Report: EU to propose €584bn energy grid upgrade plan
  3. Morocco snubs Left MEPs probing asylum-seeker deaths
  4. EU urges calm after Putin's nuclear threat
  5. Council of Europe rejects Ukraine 'at gunpoint' referendums
  6. Lithuania raises army alert level after Russia's military call-up
  7. Finland 'closely monitoring' new Russian mobilisation
  8. Flights out of Moscow sell out after Putin mobilisation order

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. UNESDA - Soft Drinks EuropeCall for EU action – SMEs in the beverage industry call for fairer access to recycled material
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic prime ministers: “We will deepen co-operation on defence”
  3. EFBWW – EFBH – FETBBConstruction workers can check wages and working conditions in 36 countries
  4. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic and Canadian ministers join forces to combat harmful content online
  5. European Centre for Press and Media FreedomEuropean Anti-SLAPP Conference 2022
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic ministers write to EU about new food labelling

Latest News

  1. Ireland joins EU hawks on Russia, as outrage spreads
  2. Editor's weekly digest: Plea for support edition
  3. Investors in renewables face uncertainty due to EU profits cap
  4. How to apply the Nuremberg model for Russian war crimes
  5. 'No big fish left' for further EU sanctions on Russians
  6. Meloni's likely win will not necessarily strengthen Orbán
  7. France latest EU member to step up government spending in 2023
  8. Big Tech now edges out Big Energy in EU lobbying

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us