TEHRAN, Dec. 18 (Xinhua) -- Iran and Nicaragua on Sunday signed a comprehensive plan to expand cooperation, according to the official news agency IRNA.
The plan was signed by Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian and his Nicaraguan counterpart Denis Moncada during their meeting in Tehran.
In the meeting, the Iranian foreign minister voiced Tehran's readiness for improving economic and trade relations with Managua to the highest level.
Amir-Abdollahian said the bilateral political relations of the two countries were "excellent," stressing that the expansion of economic and trade ties is among the two countries' top priorities and should be given more attention.
He said the two countries' comprehensive cooperation plan is a new and strategic roadmap for developing bilateral relations.
At the same meeting, the Nicaraguan foreign minister said he hoped that the signing of the comprehensive cooperation plan and the upcoming first meeting of the joint economic commission would further strengthen bilateral relations.
During a meeting with Moncada later in the day, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi said stronger cooperation between the two countries will "neutralize" the pressure from the United States and its Western allies, according to a statement from the Iranian president's office.
The Iranian president accused the United States and the West of using certain tools, such as human rights, to exert pressure on "independent and resistant" countries.
According to Raisi, both Iran and Nicaragua have strong capacities that give them a solid foundation for advancing their relations.
Pointing to the good relations as well as positive and constructive cooperation between Iran and Nicaragua in international institutions and organizations, the Iranian president said resistance against hostilities and the pressures of global arrogance -- a term Iranian authorities use to refer to the United States and its allies -- is one of the factors that strengthened their bilateral relations and cooperation.
Both Iran and Nicaragua have been under U.S. unilateral sanctions. The sanctions on Iran intensified in 2018 after former U.S. President Donald Trump pulled out of a 2015 nuclear deal between Tehran and world powers.
In 1985, then-U.S. President Ronald Reagan imposed sanctions against Nicaragua, prohibiting all trade between the United States and Nicaragua. ■