Syrian President Bashar al-Assad pays official visit to Iran (UPDATE)

Other News Materials 19 August 2009 15:53 (UTC +04:00)

The Syrian President Bashar al-Assad visited Iran on Aug 19. Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki met the president at the Tehran airport, IRNA reported.

Bashar al-Assad's visit is scheduled for one day. It is Ahmadinejad's second official meeting as President since his reelection. The Shah of Oman, Sultan Qaboos bin Said, paid an official visit to Iran before the Syrian President's visit. Assad's visit was scheduled four days before but it was postponed. The purpose of the visit is to officially congratulate Ahmadinejad on his reelection.  

Last week the French President Nicolas Sarkozy thanked Assad for participating in talks to release French teacher, Clotilda Rice, who was arrested during disorders in Iran in July.

Syria has recently taken action to improve relations with the USA. At present, the USA and Syria are planning to set up Embassies. The USA broke relations with Syria after the death of Lebanese Prime-Minister Rafiq al-Hariri in a terrorist attack in 2007. Western countries accused the Syrian government of the terrorist act. At present, diplomatic relations between Iran and Syria are developing normally. Syria is Iran's closest ally.