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Istanbul, Dec 23, (KATAKAMI / IRNA) – Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Teyyip Erdogan met here late Wednesday night and discussed most important bilateral, regional and international issues.
According to IRNA Night Service, the information website of the IRI Presidential Office reported early Thursday morning that the late Wednesday night meeting of the two top politicians took more than an hour.
The two sides emphasized in the meeting over the need for the improvement of comprehensive bilateral relation, cooperation, and harmony, arguing that such moves would be to the benefit of both nations, and boost peace and security in the region and the world.
The meeting took place on the sidelines of the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) Summit in Istanbul.
The 11th Heads of State and Government Summit of ECO began its activities on Wednesday, December 23rd in Istanbul.
Prior to the summit, economic experts attended the senior officials’ meeting slated on December 20 and 21, and foreign ministers of ECO member countries held the 19th Council of Ministers Meeting on December 22.
The Iranian president is also scheduled to hold meetings with Turkish officials and representations from other ECO member countries on the sidelines of the summit.
The newly-appointed caretaker of Iran’s Foreign Ministry Ali-Akbar Salehi is accompanying President Ahmadinejad in this trip.
Moreover, representatives from ECO Secretariat, ECO subsidiary organs and a number of international organizations are expected to attend the meetings.
The 10th ECO summit was held in Tehran in March 2009.
Following the summit, Turkish President Abdullah Gul will host a trilateral meeting with Afghan President Hamid Karzai and Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari aimed at bringing the two countries closer on December 24.
The ECO is an intergovernmental regional organization established in 1985 by Iran, Pakistan and Turkey providing a platform to promote economic, technical and cultural cooperation among member states.
The organization was expanded in 1992 to include seven new members, namely Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.
ECO members aim to establish a single market for goods and services, much like the European Union.
ECO’s secretariat and cultural department are located in Tehran, its economic bureau is in Turkey and its scientific bureau is situated in Pakistan. (*)