Iran and Venezuela signed a 20-year agreement on cooperation between the two allies subject to US sanctions when Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro visited the Islamic Republic on Saturday.

Iran’s President Ebrahim Raisi said the signing of the agreement “shows the determination of senior officials from both countries to develop relations in different areas.”

At a joint press conference in Tehran, Maduro said the cooperation would target the energy and financial sectors and “cooperate in defense projects.”

Maduro also met with Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Hamenei, who stated that “resistance” was a way to counter US pressure.

“The conclusion that can be drawn from the resistance and success of the two countries of Iran and Venezuela is that the only way to counter pressure is to stand and resist,” said Khamenei.

According to a statement on the official website, Hamenei welcomed the agreement and called for “stronger” cooperation between Tehran and Caracas.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran has shown that it is at risk and in the hands of its friends,” he added.

Along with Russia, China, Cuba, Turkey, etc., Iran is one of Venezuela’s major allies. And like Venezuela, it is subject to strict US sanctions.

“Venezuela has gone through tough years, but the determination of the people, officials and the president was that sanctions should be resisted,” Raisi said at a joint press conference.

“This is a good sign to prove to everyone that resistance works and retreats the enemy,” the Iranian president added.

In addition to the 20-year agreement signed by the foreign ministers of the two countries, “Iran and Venezuela have signed a document on cooperation in the fields of politics, culture, tourism, economy, oil and petrochemicals,” said state news agency IRNA. rice field.

“We have an important cooperation project between Iran and Venezuela in the areas of energy, petrochemicals, oil, gas and refineries,” said Maduro.

-Direct flight-

Starting July 18, there will be a direct flight between Caracas and Tehran “to promote tourism and a coalition between the two countries,” and “Venezuela is open to accept tourists from Iran.” Added.

The Iranian president said direct flights would pave the way for “strengthening trade and economic relations and bringing the two countries closer together.”

According to IRNA, the two presidents attended a ceremony via video conference to commemorate the delivery of the second of four Iranian oil tankers to Venezuela.

The relationship between the two oil producers was strong under Venezuelan socialist leader Hugo Chavez and further strengthened under his successor Maduro.

In May 2022, Iran’s Minister of Oil Javad Owji met Maduro during an official visit to Venezuela, the world’s largest proven oil reserve.

Owji also met with Venezuelan counterpart Tareck El Aissami on the best way to deal with US economic sanctions.

The oil minister’s trip to Venezuela came just weeks after a sudden visit by US officials following the surge in global oil prices caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February.

The US delegation even held a quiet meeting with Maduro, who disagrees with his very legitimacy as President of Washington.

Iran is a major oil producer, saying in April its capacity returned to the levels seen before President Donald Trump’s re-enforcement of US sanctions in 2018.

In 2020, Venezuela received two fuels and derivatives from Iran to address the chronic domestic shortage.

Iran is the third country Maduro visited this week following his trips to Turkey and Algeria.

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