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Rouhani, Turkish FM Discuss Regional Security

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu (L) meets President Hassan Rouhani in Tehran on Nov. 26. Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu (L) meets President Hassan Rouhani in Tehran on Nov. 26.

The president attached high importance to regular political consultations between the two neighbors, saying it can help promote peace in West Asia.

Rouhani said regional security should be the focus of these consultations, as “the region is in a critical situation.”

“If important regional powers stand by each other, issues in Iraq and Syria can be solved without any need for outsiders,” he said, adding that Iran and Turkey are in agreement over how to assist West Asian nations.

Cavusoglu said his country is determined to deepen its Iran ties, saying the two states should devote efforts to lift bilateral trade to $30 billion.

The senior Turkish diplomat praised Iran’s “constructive and valuable” role in the international arena and highlighted the need for an effective fight against terrorism to restore peace to the region.

“Protecting territorial integrity and national unity in Iraq and Syria will benefit Iran, Turkey and regional stability,” he said.

“In regional conflicts, western governments are largely pursuing their own interests,” he said. “Political settlement [in Syria] and a joint fight against terrorist groups [operating there] are essential.”

Later in the day, the top Turkish diplomat called on Mohammad Javad Zarif.

Iran is an ally of the Syrian government in its campaign against militants wishing to bring it down, while Turkey has been a supporter of militants.

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