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Monday, March 19, 2007


Tehran, 19 March (AKI) - Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and his Armenian counterpart Robert Kocharian opened on Monday the first Armenian part of a natural gas pipeline connecting the two countries.The two presidents inaugurated the first 40 kilometre stretch of the pipeline in the border town of Meghri. Under the project, which was launched in 2004 and has so far cost 200 million dollars, Iran will at first deliver 400 million cubic metres of gas a year which should rise to 2.5 billion once the project is completed. Armenia will in exchange reportedly provide electricity to Iran.

During the inauguration, Ahmadinejad said the pipeline is a "symbol of the deep friendship which ties Iran, an Islamic country, to Armenia, a Christian country."

Armenia is Iran's main political and economic partner in the Caucasus.
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