Tajik President Endorses Cooperation Deal with Iran
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – President of Tajikistan gave his approval to a deal that facilitates cooperation between the customs services of his country and Iran, sending mixed signals about how Dushanbe will shape its ties with Tehran a few days after an anti-Iran documentary was aired by the Tajik state TV.
Emomali Rahmon reportedly endorsed the agreement on the expansion of cooperation between the customs services of Iran and Tajikistan on Friday.
The Tajik leader has assigned head of the Customs Service Under the Government of the Republic of Tajikistan (CSGRT) to sign the bilateral agreement with Iran, and also ordered Tajik Foreign Ministry officials to make arrangements for the time and venue for signing the deal with Iran.
The move came a few days after Tajikistan state television aired a documentary accusing Iran of sending assassins and saboteurs into the former Soviet republic in the 1990s, when it was embroiled in a civil war.
Iran’s Embassy in Dushanbe denied the allegations raised in the film, slamming the “spiteful” narrative as an attempt to foment discord between the two countries.
In July, Iran’s Foreign Ministry highlighted the positive outlook the country has on its relations with Tajikistan, saying, though, that certain third parties appear to be seeking a rift between the two countries.
“Iran and Tajikistan have a lot in common, and there is a positive view in Iran on Tajikistan, as Iran has always tried to enhance the (bilateral) relations,” Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Qassemi said on July 10, when asked about any strains in the relationship between Tehran and Dushanbe.
“Sometimes, there is a feeling that third countries are trying to undermine the relations between the two countries given their unique commonalities,” he deplored.
It came after the economic and cultural offices of the Iranian embassy in Tajikistan’s northern province of Sughd were closed at the request of the Tajik government.
According to local sources, Tajik authorities had ordered the directors of the Iranian organizations in Khujand, the second-largest city of Tajikistan, to stop their activities because Tajikistan “does not need their services anymore.”