May 05, 2009
Djibouti-Iran Foreign Relations
In September 2006, Djibouti President Ismail Omar Guelleh praised Iran for its determination to access peaceful nuclear technology and supported Iran's right to use nuclear energy for peaceful purposes. During a 2007 trip to Djibouti, Vice President Davoudi expressed appreciation for President Guelleh’s continued rhetorical support of Iran’s pursuit of peaceful nuclear energy.
Djibouti and Iran have forged initial bilateral ties and stressed economic relations that aim to build a more extensive relationship in the future. The two countries signed an agreement in 2005 to facilitate increased trade relations. Initial trade exchanges have recently given way to calls for increased economic development cooperation. In 2007, Iranian Vice President Parviz Davoudi in a meeting with Djibouti’s Prime Minister Mohamed Dileita, expressed Iran’s willingness to cooperate in energy and infrastructure development projects in Djibouti. In a meeting in February 2009, the Governor of the Djibouti Central Bank told Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki that his was eager to expand Djibouti’s economic ties with Iran. Later that month, the two countries signed five cooperation protocols including an agreement between their central banks to open a credit line for Djibouti in Iran.
Beyond economic ties, Djibouti and Iran have expressed a public willingness to develop political and military relations. In February 2009, Iranian President Ahmadinejad said in an official visit to Djibouti that Iran and Djibouti are committed to deepening their political relations. President Guelleh has also extended broader political support to Iran. While on an official visit to the country in 2006, President Guelleh described Iran as “the front runner of the Islamic states which resists to enemies of Islam” and expressed Djibouti’s shared views with Iran on regional and international issues. During President Guelleh’s visit, Iran also expressed interested in extending cooperation to defense issues in the future. Meeting with President Guelleh in Tehran, Iranian Defense Minister Mostafa Mohammad-Najjar said that Iran was prepared to “broaden” defense ties with Djibouti.