Velayati, Putin's Envoy Discuss Region, Ties

Velayati, Putin's Envoy Discuss Region, Ties
Velayati, Putin's Envoy Discuss Region, Ties

Ali Akbar Velayati, the foreign policy advisor to the Leader of Islamic Revolution, met in Tehran with Alexander Lavrentiev, Russian President Vladimir Putin's special envoy on Syria.

Speaking in the meeting on Sunday, Velayati hoped that Tehran-Moscow cooperation would further expand, adding that frequent contacts on regional crises between the two sides can help restore peace to conflict-ridden countries of the region. Lavrentiev said he was in Tehran to discuss the settlement of West Asia's conflicts and bilateral relations "that are becoming closer day by day".

"The Russian and Iranian presidents attach high importance to development of bilateral ties," he said.

Syria has been the scene of a standoff between the country's army and foreign-backed militants and terrorists fighting to bring down the government since 2011.

Russia has been lending air power to the counter-terror push in Syria since last September and Iran has been providing Syrian troops with advisory assistance since the early months of the conflict.

The Syrian Army and its allies had engaged in a major operation in recent months to liberate the eastern neighborhoods of Aleppo, the second biggest Syrian city, which were controlled by militants since 2011. After successive advances by the army, militants now occupy only a small pocket of the city. In another meeting on Sunday, Lavrentiev sat down for talks with Secretary of Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani.

Shamkhani said that all available capacities should be tapped to provide humanitarian aid to civilians in Aleppo and prepare the city for a return of normality. Lavrentiev has traveled to Tehran several times this year.


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