Thursday, March 30, 2017
Iran's President Rouhani Visited Russia: Another Step To A Multipolar World
The significance of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani’s visit to Russia on March 27-28 goes far beyond the bilateral relationship. Iran is one of the main actors in Syria and Iraq. It has an importance place in the geopolitical plans of US President Donald Trump. Its relationship with Russia is an important factor of international politics. The future of the entire Middle East depends to a great extent on what Russia and Iran do and how effectively they coordinate their activities.
Less than two months are left till the presidential election in Iran. The presidential race formally starts on April 17 and Rouhani has a good chance to win. True, the country’s foreign policy at the strategic level is defined by Iran's Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, but the executive branch of the government led by president implements it. The spiritual leader does not pay visits to other countries but Russian President Vladimir Putin met him in Tehran last year – the second time in the recent 17 years.
This was Rouhani's first official visit to Russia and the first time he and Putin met within a bilateral framework. The trip took place against the background of growing partnership as both countries have become leading forces of the Astana process that made Iran, Russia and Turkey guarantors of the Syrian cease-fire.