Xi Jinping to pay state visit to Iran

He "gladly accepted the invitation

Xi Jinping to pay state visit to Iran

He "gladly accepted the invitation." Chinese President Xi Jinping will pay a state visit to Iran, the Chinese Foreign Ministry announced Thursday, February 16, following a visit to Beijing by Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi. So far, no date has been announced.

The Chinese president's last state visit to Iran was in January 2016. The announcement comes on the third and final day of a visit by Mr. Raisi, the first by an Iranian president to China in more than 20 years.

Political and economic partners, the two countries are facing Western pressure, in particular because of their positions vis-à-vis the invasion of Ukraine by Russia. Iran is already under US sanctions over its nuclear program.

In the statement Thursday, the two countries called for the lifting of US sanctions, saying that "guaranteeing Iran's economic dividends" was "an important part" of the nuclear agreement signed in 2015. They also called for " the full and effective implementation" of this agreement, blaming "the unilateral withdrawal of the United States" for the current tensions.

"Solidarity" and "Cooperation"

Iran is one of the last major countries to offer support to Russia, whose diplomatic isolation has been growing since the beginning of the Russian military intervention at the end of February 2022. Western countries notably accuse the Islamic Republic of providing Moscow armed military drones used against Ukraine, which Tehran denies.

On Tuesday, President Xi Jinping praised China-Iran "solidarity", saying that "in the face of the complex situation brought about by developments in the world, times and history, China and Iran support each other , display their solidarity and cooperation".

Beijing had signed a vast 25-year strategic agreement with Tehran in 2021. This major partnership covers areas as varied as energy, security, infrastructure and communications.