South Africa pushing for Iran’s membership at BRICS, Mbete says

She also said South Africa acknowledges Iran’s achievements in the field of education and expressed hope that Larijani will make a visit to her country by the end of year.

Ali Larijani made the remarks at a joint press conference with Baleka Mbete, the visiting Speaker of the National Assembly of South Africa, according to the Arabic Satellite TV channel Alalam.

Iran, the second largest economy in the Middle East and North Africa region, has announced its willingness to join the group and enjoys friendly relations with all of its members.

In the presser, Larijani said the two sides discussed grounds for investment cooperation in various sectors.

“The export of the honey produced by Iranian beekeepers cooperatives to South Africa is one of the results of having the commerce attaché of this country in the meetings of the agriculture commission of the Chamber of Cooperatives”, said Alireza Banaiefar, the Director of the International Affairs at Iran’s Chamber of Cooperatives on Sunday.

“The meeting also touched upon development of transport between the two countries, as well as cooperation in the fight against terrorism and exchange of relevant information”, he said.

Before meeting Larijani, Mbete sat down for talks with the recently reelected Rouhani.

Iran cut ties with the white supremacist regime in South Africa right after the Islamic Revolution of 1979, and resumed relations only after Nelson Mandela was elected as its first black president in 1994.

It came after the 2015 nuclear deal that took effect in January 2016 to remove global sanctions on Iran and open its path to greater worldwide engagement.

Iranian Majlis (parliament) speaker said here Saturday that Iran welcomes expansion of comprehensive ties with South Africa.

She also called for expanding relations in various areas.

Mbete also called for closer cooperation with Iran at worldwide level to boost peace and friendship in the world.

She said during the visit by the South African president to Tehran in April 2016 the issue of Iran’s membership in BRICS was raised and “we are interested in Iran’s membership… and believe that by inclusion of new countries” the bloc will see more economic development.

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