Iran FM to embark on three-nation North Africa tour: Spokesman
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif is to make a two-day official visit to three North African countries to discuss latest regional developments and mutual relations, PressTV reported.
Zarif is to kick off his visit to Algeria, Mauritania and Tunisia on Sunday, Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Qassemi said on Saturday.
He added that the top Iranian diplomat plans to hold talks with foreign ministers and heads of state of the three countries.
The visit is aimed at exploring possible avenues for strengthening relations and exchanging views about developments in the Middle East, particularly the war in Syria and the crisis involving Qatar and several other Arab countries in the Persian Gulf region, the Iranian spokesperson said.
Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt, and the United Arab Emirates severed ties with Qatar in early June, officially accusing Doha of supporting terrorism and destabilizing the region, which Doha strongly denies. In their apparent bid to secure US support and that of Israel, they further suspended all land, air and sea traffic with Qatar, expelled its diplomats and ordered Qatari citizens to leave their countries.
Different foreign-backed terrorist groups have been wreaking havoc in Syria since 2011. Over the past few months, Syrian forces have made sweeping gains against Takfiri elements, who have lately increased their acts of violence across the country following a series of defeats on the ground.
UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura estimated last August that more than 400,000 people had been killed in the crisis until then.
Qassemi further stressed the importance of reinforcing solidarity among Muslim countries given the ongoing developments in the region and said, “The Islamic Republic of Iran believes that Muslim states must have further unity and convergence in the face of ill-wishers and those who seek to sow discord.”
The Iranian foreign minister paid a visit to the North African countries of Tunisia and Algeria in August 2015.