Issue 430 - 24 Feb 1992
The political disintegration of the former Soviet Union was, despite some fears expressed in Tehran about possible instability across the country's northern borders, generally welcomed by the ruling establishment in Iran. The emergence of the Muslim Central Asian republics as independent states was recognised as a particularly significant development for the region and Tehran lost no time in establishing direct contacts with the new republics. Last, November foreign minister Ali Akbar Velayati visited all six of the Islamic Central Asian republics to assure them of Tehran's friendly feelings. More specifically, Velayati signed a series of agreements and letters of understanding on economic and trade co-operation with the new governments which confirmed Iran's political interests in the area.
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