The Defense Minister of Tajikistan, Colonel-General Sherali Mirzo, today departed for Tehran on an official visit, Colonel Faridoun Mahmadalizoda, a spokesman for the Ministry of Defense (MoD), told Asia-Plus in an interview.

While in Tehran, Sherali Mirzo will hold talks with high-ranking Iranian political and military officials to discuss cooperation, Mahmadalizoda said. 

The sides will discuss issues related to expansion of military and technical cooperation between the two countries, including training military personnel, conducting joint military exercises, exchanging information and learning from each other’s experience. 

A special attention will be given to joint actions to combat terrorism and extremism, MoD spokesman added.  

Recall, Tajikistan and Iran have vowed to boost bilateral cooperation.  On March 29, Tajik President Emomali Rahmon met in Dushanbe with Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on the sidelines of the regional conference themed “Heart of Asia –Istanbul Process.” The Tajik president’s official website says the construction of the Istiqlol Tunnel was recognized as one of the positive examples of the bilateral cooperation between Tajikistan and Iran.  In connection with the aggravation of geopolitical and geostrategic competition, the growing threats and challenges to security and the situation in Afghanistan, it was found necessary to take joint measures to prevent terrorism, extremism, drug trafficking and transnational organized crime.  The two sides also discussed other areas of bilateral cooperation between the two countries in the areas such as economy, trade, energy, industry, transportation, science and culture.  On March 30, Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif held talks with his Tajik counterpart Sirojiddin Muhriddin.  The two discussed the ways to develop bilateral cooperation

Relations between Tajikistan and Iran have come under strain after officials in Tehran invited Muhiddin Kabiri, who chairs the opposition Islamic Renaissance Party (IRPT) banned in Tajikistan, to an international Islamic conference in December 2015.  In 2014, Iran was Tajikistan’s third-largest trade partner with trade turnover amounting to about US$200 million, but due to a relationship crisis, the figures dropped to US$60-70 million in 2015.

In 2019, Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani paid a visit to Tajikistan, signaling thaw of relations between the two countries.