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Iranian President Visits Belarus

10 September 2004 -- Iranian President Mohammad Khatami visited Belarus today and met with Belarusian President Alyaksandr Lukashenka.

Khatami hailed what he called Lukashenka's "independent policy." Lukashenka has been criticized by the West for his authoritarian ways and crackdown on political opponents and the independent media.

Following the talks between the presidents, Belarusian and Iranian officials signed six agreements, including one relating to security cooperation, the contents of which were not revealed.

Belarusian and Iranian officials discussed plans to enhance economic cooperation, including Belarus' plans to sell heavy trucks and tractors to Iran.

Khatami flew to Minsk from Armenia. He is scheduled to fly to Tajikistan on 11 September.