An official welcoming ceremony was held at the Sadabad Palace for Prime Minister Erdoğan upon his arrival to the Iranian capital. Greeted by Vice President Muhammed Riza Rahimi, Erdoğan offered his thanks for the welcome in Persian.
Foreign Affairs Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu, Economy Minister Zafer Çağlayan, Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Taner Yildiz, Minister of Environment and Urbanization Erdoğan Bayraktar, AK Party Deputy Chair Omer Çelik, Ak Party Ankara Deputy Yalçin Akdoğan, MİT Undersecretary Hakan Fidan and Deputy Chief of General Staff General Hulusi Akar were also in attendance for the official welcoming ceremony.
After holding a one on one meeting with Riza Rahimi followed by a meeting between committees, Prime Minister Erdoğan responded to questions at a press conference. In regards to the issue of nuclear negotiations with Iran being held in Istanbul, Erdoğan stated, "Mr. Salih has already expressed that deliberations should be held in Istanbul. During the nuclear summit in Seoul, there were positive developments on the issue regarding the other parties involved. At this stage, I think we need to wait for an announcement to come from them. We hope to contribute positively to this process. From the start, we have been in the position of being the third country to follow developments most closely."
No one has the right to make impositions when it comes to peaceful nuclear power
When asked if there was any sort of imposition made by western nations in regards to nuclear energy, Erdoğan stated, "When it comes to the peaceful use of nuclear energy, no one has a right to make any sort of impositions. During the summit in Korea, the issue of handling nuclear power for public energy and military energy together was discussed. Of course, everyone with common sense is normally opposed to nuclear weapons. No one has the right or authority to impose anything on anyone with regards to nuclear energy for peaceful purposes."
Rahimi: We approve negotiations being held in Turkey
In regards to the issue of nuclear energy, Iran's First Vice President Rahimi stated the following:
"Iran's viewpoint is that the use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes is allowed for everyone in the world. Our brothers in the Turkish Republic know about this issue better than anyone because we are neighboring countries. We have made extensive investments for the peaceful use of nuclear energy. This is generally used for scientific purposes and we are only concerned with serving humanity. When it comes to our intentions to use nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, we absolutely have no other program that would go against humanity and our religion. We definitely approve and request Turkey's involvement in nuclear negotiations," states Rahimi who went on to praise Turkey for its insistent support for countries' rights to acquire nuclear energy for peaceful purposes.
Erdoğan meets with Larijani
Erdoğan also met with Iran's Chairman of Parliament Ali Larijani. The meeting was held in Larijani's office and was closed to the press. Later, Erdoğan also met with the Islamic Conference Organization's Department in Iran.
Meeting with Ahmedinejad postponed
Meanwhile, the meeting between Prime Minister Erdoğan and Iranian President Mahmud Ahmedinejad that was scheduled for yesterday was postponed to today. Erdoğan will also be meeting with Iran's spiritual leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei later today.