Iran’s newly-appointed Navy Commander Rear Admiral Shahram Irani says the Islamic Republic and Pakistan play a key role in maintaining security in regional waters, urging the two countries to boost cooperation to ensure security in the Indian Ocean.
"Pakistan has always had a very authoritative and coordinated presence in the sea," Irani said in a meeting with Pakistan's Chief of the Naval Staff Admiral Muhammad Amjad Khan Niazi in Tehran on Saturday.
He added that the deep-rooted relations between the two countries in the maritime field would definitely go down in history.
The Iranian commander said, "It is expected that Pakistan will continue the same growing and effective historical path and increase its share of [promoting] relations with Muslim neighboring countries [and those countries] with historical and cultural commonalities."
He noted that naval forces of the two countries have maintained strategic and favorable relations for many years and carried out joint and combined military exercises.
He also called on the Iranian and Pakistani naval forces to have more active and coordinated cooperation to establish maritime security in the Indian Ocean.
The Iranian commander emphasized that the most important strategy of the Islamic Republic is to boost relations based on defensive diplomacy.
"Our country has been subjected to unfair sanctions and has gone through a difficult period over the past four decades,” Irani said, emphasizing that the country has, however, succeeded in fulfilling its goals.
Heading a military delegation, the top Pakistani commander arrived in Tehran on Saturday morning to discuss possible ways to strengthen military and maritime relations, improve regional security and make use of the two countries’ experience in conducting naval missions and protecting the national interests of Iran and Pakistan in the sea.
Niazi also visited the Iranian Sacred Defense Museum and paid tribute to anonymous martyrs of the Iraqi imposed war of the 1980s.
He is going to visit the Iranian Navy’s northern bases on the Caspian Sea coast on Sunday.
The naval forces of Iran and Pakistan have in recent years promoted cooperation and staged several joint drills in the Indian Ocean and the Sea of Oman.
In April, Iranian naval forces and a visiting flotilla of warships from the Pakistan Navy staged joint exercises in the Persian Gulf, which extended to the Strait of Hormuz and the northern part of the Indian Ocean.