Iran hails thaw in Turkey’s ties with Syria

Syria’s Overseas Minister Faisal Mekdad (proper) and Iran’s Overseas Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian attend a information convention in Damascus, Syria. — Reuters/File

ANKARA: Iran on Tuesday hailed the resumption of the primary direct ministerial talks between arch-rivals Ankara and Damascus for the reason that outbreak of the Syrian civil warfare greater than a decade in the past.

Ankara’s relations with Damascus ruptured after Ankara started backing insurgent efforts to topple Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan known as Assad a “terrorist” in 2017 and refused to recognise the Syrian chief’s rule.

However Damascus ally Russia managed to rearrange the primary direct assembly between the Syrian and Turkish defence ministers since 2011 in Moscow in December.

Extra conferences are tentatively being deliberate for the approaching weeks geared toward paving the best way for a landmark peace summit between Erdogan and Assad.

Iran’s Overseas Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian — whose authorities additionally strongly backs Assad — mentioned Tehran totally supported the reconciliation efforts.

“We’re very happy by the truth that relations between Damascus and Ankara are present process change,” Amir-Abdollahian instructed reporters after talks in Ankara together with his Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu.

“We consider any optimistic growth in relations between Ankara and Damascus will profit our area and our international locations,” the Iranian international minister mentioned.

Amir-Abdollahian flew into Ankara recent from a go to to Damascus for talks with Syrian counterpart Faisal Mekdad on Saturday.

Cavusoglu mentioned he supposed to carry his first official assembly with Mekdad “within the upcoming interval”.

He had earlier steered that he would possibly meet his Syrian counterpart in Moscow subsequent month.

“As we speak, we emphasised that Iran’s contribution to this course of is essential,” Cavusoglu mentioned.

US concern

Russia’s skill to reopen dialogue between NATO member Turkey and the Assad authorities has unsettled america.

Washington’s relations with Ankara are already strained by US assist for Kurdish forces in northern Syria that Erdogan views as “terrorists”.

Some analysts consider that Russia is hoping Damascus and Ankara can unite of their shared need to push the US forces out of Syria.

The US State Division mentioned this month that it didn’t “assist international locations upgrading their relations or expressing assist to rehabilitate the brutal dictator Bashar al-Assad”.

The Syrian chief has additionally set robust circumstances for a gathering with Erdogan.

Assad mentioned final week {that a} presidential summit relied on “the tip of occupation” by Ankara of components of Syria.

Erdogan argues that Turkey wants a navy presence in northern Syria to guard its territory from cross-border assaults by the Kurdish forces.

Cavusoglu mentioned Tuesday that Ankara revered Syria’s “territorial integrity” but in addition sought assist in its fights towards “terrorists”.

“These terrorists should be cleared out,” Cavusoglu mentioned in reference to the Syrian Kurdish forces.

“We have to struggle terrorism collectively.”

Iran’s high diplomat additionally held a 90-minute assembly in Ankara with Erdogan that included discussions concerning the timing of a long-planned go to to Turkey by Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi.

“Hopefully, this go to will happen within the close to future, and it’ll speed up our bilateral relations,” Amir-Abdollahian mentioned.

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