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Huge Russian Ro Ro ship docks at Iranian port after 21 years

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
A Russian Ro-Ro cargo vessel has docked at Iran's Noshahr port of for a first time in 21 years.

Iran’s northern port of Noshahr has welcomed a first Russian Ro Ro cargo vessel after 21 years as the two countries seek to increase their transit cooperation as part of efforts to counter the American sanctions.

Kompozitor Gasanov, a Russian roll-on/roll-off vessel, had docked at Noshahr on May 2, said a report by semi-official Mehr news agency on Wednesday.

The report said that the ship had unloaded 66 Ro Ro trucks at Noshahr for road transit through Iran to the United Arab Emirates.

Kompozitor Gasanov, a 6,894-ton, 125.9-meter ship which is one of Russia’s largest Ro Ro vessels, is currently returning to the port of Olya in Russia’s Astrakhan region where it started its journey toward Iran a few weeks ago.

The last time a major Russian vessel had docked at Noshahr port was in 1991 when the Mercury unloaded its cargo in the port located in the central coast of the Caspian Sea.

Russia and Iran have expanded their trade ties in recent years in an effort to offset the economic impacts of American sanctions on both countries.

Experts say Russia will seek more Iranian assistance to battle fresh Western sanctions imposed on the country because of the ongoing war in Ukraine.

They say cargo transit through Iran will be key to Russia’s efforts to maintain trade ties with partners in the Persian Gulf and in Asia now that normal trade routes are blocked because of the sanctions.

Iranian transportation minister Rostam Qassemi was in Moscow earlier this week to discuss increased cooperation between the two countries in the fields of cargo transit, rail and air transportation.

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