Beirut, May 3 (EFE).- Iranian president Ebrahim Raisi on Wednesday congratulated Syria for achieving “victory” in the country’s protracted civil war, amid growing Arab rapprochement after over a decade of political isolation.
Raisi’s remarks in Damascus come on the first visit by an Iranian head of state to the war-torn country since the war broke out in 2011.
“Syria, government and people, have gone through large difficulties, and today we can say that you have surpassed all these problems and achieved victory despite the threats and sanctions imposed on you,” Raisi was quoted as saying by Iranian and Syrian state media.
Tehran is one of Syria’s major military and economic allies, providing it with oil derivatives, as well as other goods the country has no access to due to the tough international sanctions against it.
“Many regional and extra-regional changes have failed to impact the brotherly relations between the two countries and Iran and Syria proved they were right in their positions,” said Raisi.
According to Syiria’s official Sana news agency, al-Assad and Raisi met in the presidential palace in Damascus to discuss ways to boost bilateral cooperation and the situation in the region. Both leaders are also expected to sign a series of agreements on economic cooperation.
Raisi, accompanied by a high-level delegation including Iran’s top diplomat Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, is visiting Syria for two days in the wake of the recent reconciliation between Iran and its regional archrival Saudi Arabia.
Earlier this week, a group of Arab foreign ministers met with their Syrian counterpart Faisal Mekdad in Jordan to discuss Syria’s return to the Arab League, which it was expelled from in 2011, and steps to end the Syrian conflict.EFE