Speaking in his first weekly press conference in Tehran, Qassemi said Iran and Russia have strategic and very close ties in some areas, including the fight against ISIS.
“The fight against ISIS is what matters to us and we will spare no effort to that end. We had an agreement for joint moves with Russia, and [Moscow’s] use of our space was with prior notice and permission for the fight against terrorism,” he noted, as reported by Tasnim and translated by IFP.
“Iran and Russia had agreed to make announcements [about Russia’s use of Iranian airbase] after the operation, and they did so,” Qassemi noted.
“Neither has Russia a military base in Iran, nor has it any deployment. It was something carried out [by the two sides], and is over for now,” he stressed.
The remarks came as Defence Minister Brigadier General Hossein Dehqan said on Saturday the Russian aircraft fly to the Iranian airbase to be either refuelled or get reloaded, noting that they use the base for more effective operation against terrorist groups in Syria.
Dehqan also ruled out any plans for permitting Russian jets to use Iranian bases other than the Nojeh airbase in Hamadan at the moment, but noted that they can keep using the airbase as long as necessary.