After Mikhail Ulyanov, the Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to international organizations in Vienna, pointed out the creation of a new triangle in international diplomacy by China, Iran and Russia at the end of 2022, special attention was paid everywhere to this political formation. Interest in this circumstance has further increased following the productive trilateral consultations held in Vienna in December by the Permanent Missions of China, Iran and Russia “on issues of mutual interest.”
In principle, this unification process is very logical and irreversible against the background of the world’s already realized need to move away from Washington’s attempts to strengthen its hegemony and universal dictate by imposing its “rules”, from which countries are actively moving to a multipolar world today. In addition, Moscow, Beijing and Tehran have long maintained close relations with each other on most issues, starting with opposing American hegemony in the world and resisting attempts by the United States to dominate the world through illegal sanctions against independent states and ending with the need to restore order in Afghanistan. Moreover, this cooperation takes place not only in words, but also in deeds. And this format of cooperation can easily expand since many States advocate a multilateral world.
More than 5 billion people (over 70% of the world’s population) live on the Eurasian continent, of which ca. 4 billion are in Asia. It is therefore quite clear that the future of mankind largely depends on the situation in Eurasia, and it explains why Iran, Russia and China have decided to unite for the joint development of the huge continent.
Large-scale projects implemented in recent years in Eurasia clearly show the active participation of China, Russia and Iran. In particular, the Silk Road routes, the creation of the West – East and North-South transport corridors, the expansion of their backbone infrastructure for the transportation of goods and the development of the Eurasian economies. The development of these land transport routes in Eurasia becomes especially relevant after the West has tried to cut off the previously familiar external Western trade routes from Russia and Iran. In this regard, the need to create a new Eurasian trade route outside of the NATO control has become obvious. The peculiar uniqueness of these projects also lies in their mutual benefit, the extreme interest declared by the parties, the availability of the necessary resources held by the project participants. So, in the last few years, these corridors have become for Central Asia, in fact, projects of the “last hope” for real and tight integration into the world production and trade systems.
Iran, which has fully tasted the long-term “international sanctions”, was one of the first to realize that sooner or later Eurasia would need a land transport route since maritime trade requires a developed navy. And if for China the threat to maritime navigation from the “Western partners” has mainly become real in recent years, then Iran has been living in these conditions for decades. Therefore, the development of these transport routes is a direct response of Russia, Iran and China to the aggressive policy of the United States and the West and their threats, especially against the background of Western hysteria triggered by Moscow special military operation to denazify the criminal Kiev regime.
However, the attempts made by Washington and its Western allies to exert external pressure and pursue a policy of illegal sanctions do not interfere with the cooperation of the three countries. On the contrary, they contribute to strengthening trilateral relations and building mutually beneficial cooperation. This is clearly confirmed by the trade growth within the specified three states. Thus, the trade turnover between Russia and Iran increased by more than 20% by the end of 2022, reaching almost $5 billion. Entrepreneurs of the three countries hold profitable commodity and production niches, they are honing logistics and settlement and payment infrastructure.
In addition to trade, economic and political integration, Russia, China and Iran are joining efforts to consolidate peace in the troubled regions of Eurasia, primarily the Middle East and the Persian Gulf. The emphasis is on eradicating terrorism, preventing the emergence of conflicts in the Caucasus, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Central Asia. Taking into account the population of Eurasia, its demographic and economic growth, it is quite obvious that in a few years the world economy will actively rotate here. And the land and sea trade routes being created will contribute to the establishment of Eurasia as a word leader not only in production, but also in trade and consumption.
China, Russia and Iran, in addition to the successful development of trilateral cooperation, are making the necessary efforts to accelerate the process of global cooperation, provide an opportunity for players outside Eurasia to participate in their projects, which is especially relevant today. This association represents the foundation of a multipolar world, which Western Europe will inevitably be forced to join, despite Washington’s attempts to prevent this process.
Not only American politicians of the “hawk wing”, but also representatives of the military openly declare their concern about the development of cooperation between China, Iran and Russia. So, Celest Wallander, the US Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs, directly stated this on February 10, calling on the states of the Middle East to counteract. Lieutenant General Alexus G. Grynkewich, commander of Air Forces Central (AFCENT), also stated his “concern” about strengthening military cooperation between Russia and Iran, as well as China, on February 13, speaking at the US Air & Space Forces Association, and emphasizing the US fears of seeing greater “cohesion between the parties” in Syria and in the Middle East in general.
However, Washington’s attempts to stop the rapprochement between Moscow, Tehran and Beijing and limit the manifestations of appreciation in the world for this new triangle in international diplomacy are completely futile. And this is confirmed, in particular, by the fact that even the openly Russophobic and pro-American Polish authorities, unlike most EU countries, recently sent their ambassador to Tehran, Maciej Falkowski to an official reception given by Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi on the occasion of the celebration of the 44th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution. And the Iranian media published photos showing the Polish ambassador sitting behind Iranian President Raisi and Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian at an official ceremony, shaking Raisi’s hand with a bow.
As evidenced by the events of recent months, the existence of the unipolar world is coming to an end. It is being replaced by a multipolar world, where cooperation between Iran, Russia and China is steadily growing and getting stronger. A vivid confirmation of this is the official state visit to China of Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi and a large representative Iranian delegation at the invitation of Chinese Leader Xi Jinping.
Valery Kulikov, political expert, exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook.”