Iran has formally requested for an observer status in the South Asian
Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC), the official IRNA news agency
reported on Saturday.
letter in this regard has been handed over this week to SAARC Secretary-General
Lyonpo Chenkyab Dorji by Rasool Islami, Director-General for West Asia Affairs
of Iran's Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
In their meeting in Kathmandu, capital of Nepal, Islami noted that Tehran's
membership in the SAARC organization will be beneficial for both sides because
of Iran's geographical position and economic strength.
The SAARC secretary-general, while expressing his happiness over the close
relations of SAARC countries with Iran, said that Iran's inclusion in the
association would be beneficial for both sides.
Dorji said that Iran's request for observer status would be taken up for
discussion during the meeting of ministers of foreign affairs of SAARC member
countries in early April this year in New Delhi.
Founded in 1985, the SAARC includes Bhutan, Bangladesh, India, Maldives, Sri
Lanka, Nepal, Pakistan and Afghanistan. China, Japan, South Korea, the United
States and the European Union are observers of the organization.