Turkey, Iran boost energy, trade ties despite growing US pressure
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Turkey and Iran have signed three agreements over the past three weeks to boost their relationship in almost all fields amid growing pressure from the United States on Ankara to halt ties with its neighbor. Energy ministers from both sides announced late Tuesday the completion of what they called a “road map” detailing their investment projects in the energy field. “It brings us great joy that the road map will be approved and signed by both sides today,” Iranian Electricity Minister Macit Namcu told reporters late Tuesday at a joint press conference with Energy Minister Taner Yıldız. The other two agreements were signed by the foreign and state ministries of both countries. The foreign ministries have agreed to open three more border gates and to create a trilateral mechanism that includes Azerbaijan to increase regional cooperation. State Minister Hayati Yazıcı meanwhile inked a protocol on cooperation in the field of “public administration” that brings about an exchange of public personnel. Turkey’s deepened and diversified economic and energy relations with Iran have sparked further U.S. reaction against Ankara. Ignoring the U.S. criticisms, Turkish government members have emphasized that Turkey is committed to developing relations with its neighbor.