"Russia has been a gradual and reliable partner of Iran," Putin added. "I am sure you have no doubts about that."
He also asked Ahmadinejad's opinion of the new proposal by Great Britain, China, France, Russia, the United States, and Germany to resolve the standoff over Iran's nuclear program.
Ahmadinejad said the Russian and Iranian positions were close and that they support each other.
The Iranian president is attending the Shanghai Cooperation Organization's annual summit as an observer. Russia, along with China and Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan are the group's full members.
DIPLOMATIC OFFENSIVE: As the United States and the European Union increase pressure on Iran regarding its nuclear program, Tehran has launched a wide-ranging and ambitious diplomatic offensive, including high-level state visits with countries including China, Indonesia, Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, and Pakistan. In May, Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad participated in a high-profile summit of the so-called Developing 8 (D8) group of countries in Bali. Below are some links to RFE/RL's coverage of Iran's efforts to boost international support for its position.
ARCHIVE To view all of RFE/RL's coverage of Iran, click here.