- The trilateral summit of the presidents of three Persian-speaking
countries of Iran, Tajikistan and Afghanistan wrapped up on August 5 in
Tehran and recorded another unforgettable event in the memory of the three
brother nations. With innumerable cultural, religious, social, lingual
and strategic commonalities, the three countries of Iran, Tajikistan and
Afghanistan have demonstrated their potentiality to build one of the strongest
diplomatic partnerships in the region and benefit the world nations through
a unique, fruitful and constructive cooperation.
- The people of Afghanistan and Tajikistan, whose countries
were parts of the Greater Persia in ancient times, consider Iran as their
cultural homeland and believe that the Iranian nation is the inheritor
of their paternal legacy, the Persian civilization.
- I had the opportunity to conduct an exclusive interview
with the Tajikistan ambassador in Tehran for the local weekly magazine
last month in which I discovered for the first time that the roots of cordiality
and affinity between Iran, Tajikistan and Afghanistan are so deep and robust
that one can hardly imagine. The Tajikistani ambassador Ramadan Mirza talked
of Iran so enthusiastically and passionately that I felt for a while that
he is in actuality more Iranian than I am. He called Iran a brother nation
several times, talked of Tehran as an ancient and respectable city, paid
homage to the antiquity and preciousness of Persian language as the common
heritage of Iran, Tajikistan and Afghanistan and told me of his early childhood's
aspiration of visiting Iran.
- He told me that when, under the soviet dominance, he
was attending the high school in Tajikistan, he read about the historical
sites of Iran such as the mausoleum of Persian poet Saadi, the tomb of
Cyrus the Great or the ancient site of Persepolis in his school textbooks
and since then, it became his ambition to visit these sites one day. He
said that when he was selected to his mission as the Tajikistan ambassador
in Tehran, his 50-year-long dream came true and he finally succeeded in
visiting the sites which seemed to him unreachable and inaccessible long
ago. Mr. Mirza told me that it is his honor to serve as his country's ambassador
in Tehran where he can freely visit the four corners of Iran whenever he
- It was in this interview that Mr. Mirza revealed for
the first time that the Tajikistani President Emomali Rahmon has formally
asked his Iranian counterpart Mahmoud Ahmadinejad that the Nowrouz festival
of 2011 be held in Persepolis which is actually the native soil of Nowrouz.
Nowrouz is a set of ancient festivities held at the beginning of vernal
equinox to mark the commencement of new solar year.
- He also pointed to the fact the despite the longstanding
dominance of Russia over the newly-established state of Tajikistan, the
Tajik people has never forgotten their maternal Persian language. It's
noteworthy that since Tajikistan was separated from the Greater Persia
during the Russo-Persian wars of 1860s, the Soviet rulers launched a de-Persianization
project in Tajikistan where almost everyone would speak Persian and write
in the Iranian alphabet.
- The history of Russia's relations with Iran narrates
the bitter story that the Eastern superpower never dealt with Iran in a
sincere, truthful and loyal manner. Traditionally, the Iranian nation thinks
of Russia as a betraying, hypocritical and oppressive state which has shown
its hostility towards the Southern neighbor on various occasions. One clear
instance is the de-Persianization project in which the national media outlets,
schools, public offices and universities of Tajikistan were banned from
using the Persian alphabet and forced to employ Cyrillic alphabet instead.
This was an artificial and uninteresting incorporation of the Russian culture
into Tajikistan which had been an inseparable constituent of Iran's large
puzzle of cultural heritage since the establishment of Achaemenid dynasty
2500 years ago.
- Iran, Tajikistan and Afghanistan have the capability
to form a powerful political coalition. They share the same language, religion
and cultural background and this is something which is a rarity in the
contemporary world. They have common ideological objectives and since they've
historically suffered from the subjugation of the superpowers, they seek
independence and freedom. The closeness of the three countries is evident
in their broad collaborations in various fields including academic exchanges,
agricultural cooperation, military ties, financial relations and cultural
- The three countries are slated to launch a trilateral
Persian-language TV channel which is based in Dushanbe and will be broadcasting
programs produced by each party. A long railway will be connecting the
three countries in near future. All of them are the members of Organization
of Islamic Conference and Non-Aligned Movement. They also sit at the same
table in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization as member states.
- The joint declaration of the fourth summit of the heads
of states of Islamic Republic of Iran, Islamic Republic of Afghanistan
and Republic of Tajikistan was compiled in 14 articles and signed by the
three presidents who have planned to hold the fifth joint meeting in Afghanistan
- In the 5th article, the three brother countries emphasized
the importance of trilateral financial relations and highlighted the expansion
of economic transactions through empowering and assisting the merchants
and investors of each country.
- In the 7th article, the three parties supported the development
of cultural, scientific and educational cooperation and underscored the
significance of joint planning for collaboration in the fields of culture,
literature, history, common cultural heritage and sports.
- In the 9th article, they announced their complete readiness
to combat extremism, terrorism, organized crimes and drug trafficking which
pose serious threats to the security and stability of the three countries.
- In the 11th article, the three countries stressed the
importance of Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and underlined the inalienable
right of the NPT member states to use the nuclear power for peaceful purposes
under the safeguards of the International Atomic Energy Agency.
- The fifth joint summit of the presidents of Iran, Tajikistan
and Afghanistan will be held next year and its date will be announced very
- Overall, it seems that the expansion of relations between
the three Persian-speaking countries who are bound together through ancient
cultural ties will serve to meet the interests of the Central Asian and
Middle Eastern nations and contribute to the sustainable and durable stability
and development in the region.