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Iran security chief had extensive de-dollrization talks with Putin: Report

Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani

Iran’s top security official Ali Shamkhani and Russian President Vladimir Putin had extensive talks on de-dollrization of trade between the two sanction-hit countries during Shamkhani’s visit to Moscow earlier this year, according to a report by Al-Araby Al-Jadeed, which is the Arabic service of the London-based website The New Arab.

Iran’s semi-official Fars news agency covered the report after it was released late on Wednesday and said that the hours-long, off-the-record meeting between Shamkhani and Putin early February was mostly focused on initiatives to offset the impacts of Western sanctions on Iran and Russia, including efforts to ditch the US dollar from bilateral trade.

It said the two had agreed that Iran and Russia could increase the share of other major currencies, including the Chinese yuan, the Emirati dirham and the Indian rupee, in their foreign exchange reserves.

The report said that the agreement was a base for Shamkhani’s following consultations in China, the United Arab Emirates and Iraq to boost Iran’s access to international trade.

Shamakhani had traveled to Moscow to attend a regional summit on Afghanistan. The former navy commander, who leads Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, then reached a deal in early March in Beijing with his Saudi counterpart Musaad bin Mohammed Al-Aiban to revive diplomatic ties between Iran and Saudi Arabia.

Shamkhani also traveled to Abu Dhabi and Baghdad last month in visits that many said were aimed at boosting Iran’s economic ties with its two Arab neighbors.

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