Johannesburg: Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Iran President Ebrahim Raisi held a bilateral meeting in Johannesburg on the sidelines of the 15th BRICS Summit.

The meeting between the two leaders came days after they had a telephone conversation in which they discussed matters of bilateral and regional importance.

During their conversation on August 18, Prime Minister Modi noted that the India-Iran relationship is underpinned by close historical and civilizational connections, including strong people-to-people contacts.

The two leaders had reiterated their commitment to further strengthen bilateral cooperation including to realize the full potential of Chabahar Port as a connectivity hub.

The two leaders also discussed cooperation at multilateral forums including the expansion of BRICS.

Iran is among six countries that have been extended full membership of BRICS during the summit meeting.

Earlier in the day, PM Modi congratulated leaders and people of Argentina, Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, Saudi Arabia and UAE over the decision on their full membership of BRICS and said India has always supported the expansion of the organisation.

In a statement in the presence of other leaders from BRICS countries, PM Modi said India has always believed that adding new members will strengthen BRICS as an organisation.

"India has always supported the expansion of BRICS. India has always believed that adding new members will strengthen BRICS as an organisation,” he said.

PM Modi said India has “historic ties” with all the new members of BRICS.

He said India will also contribute to other countries wanting to join as partner countries of BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa).

Prior to his meeting with Raisi, PM Modi also held bilateral meetings with Ethiopia Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and Senegal President Macky Sall.