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Published On: Fri, Oct 20th, 2017

Iranian envoy calls for closer ties with Nigeria

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L-R: Acting Chief Operating Officer, Peoples Media Ltd (PML), Mr. Hameed Bello presenting the copies of Peoples Daily Newspapers to Iranian Ambassador to Nigeria, Marteza Rahimi Zarchi, during the PML Management visit to the Embassy, yesterday in Abuja. Photo: Mahmud Isa

By Ochiaka Ugwu

The Ambassador of Islamic Republic of Iran to Nigeria, Ambassador Morteza Rahimi Zarchi has called for closer ties between Nigeria and his home country, saying that such move will benefit both countries as major players in their regions.
The Islamic Republic envoy made the call yesterday in Abuja when a delegation of Peoples Media Limited, publishers of Peoples Daily and Peoples Daily Weekend titles led by its Editor and acting Chief Operating Officer (COO), Mr. Hammeed Bello paid him a courtesy visit in his office.
The Ambassador who said the two countries share a lot of similarities emphasized the need for them to partner in the areas of film production, Agriculture, Mining and other activities that will be of mutual benefit to both countries.
His words, “Iran is a major player in the Middle East and Asia continent. Nigeria is also a big power in Africa. There is need for us to partner for better relation. The President of your country attended the D-8 summit in Turkey and so does my own President. This shows that the two countries have a lot in common.
“We have strong economy and we can cooperate with Nollywood on film production. We can make films on our activities to strengthen our partnership. Agriculture is another area we can partner given the fact that Nigeria has arable land and a lot of rainfall. Iran is too vast in mining and it is very important in industrialization, we can also collaborate it that area”.
Zarchi noted that the role of media is great in any setting urging African media to stand up and tell their story instead leaving it for the western media who always see them from the negative narratives.
He said the embassy has an open arm as the opportunity is always there for meaningful and development oriented programmes.
Also speaking, Consular of Cultural Consulate of the Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Sayyed Mahmoud Azimi Nasrabad said the media in Iran was quite robust with rich contents saying that about 3000 journals are published in Iran with 178 Newspapers.
He said that 25 of the newspapers were National in outlook and 53 local ones with two milion circulation daily.
Nasrabad noted that four of the Newspapers were published in English Language with a Newspaper for the blinds that dawns the newsstand always.
Speaking earlier, Peoples Daily Editor and acting Chief Operating Officer (COO), Mr. Hammeed Bello who thanked Ambassador Zarchi for welcoming us in a gentlemanly way, stated that their mission was to familiarize with the embassy with the aim of building strong relation that will endure.
For his part, Peoples Daily strategic partner, Mr. Charles Onunaiju said that the visit was to pledge support for the embassy and Islamic Republic of Iran and also to familiarize for strategic partnership.

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