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UPDATED: 09:27, March 12, 2007
Iran's defense minister stresses military cooperation with Syria
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A senior Iranian official stressed Sunday military cooperation with Syria, saying the existing strategic and defensive ties between the two countries would lead to the promotion of peace, stability and security in the region.

Visiting Iranian Defense Minister Mostafa Mohammad Najjar highlighted the importance of military cooperation in a statement after meeting Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad.

"We consider the capability of the Syrian defensive forces as our own and believe that expansion of defensive ties would ... help deal with the threats of the enemies," Najjar said in the statement.

According to him, the Syrian president highlighted the importance of the two countries' role in securing the region and expressed full satisfaction with the expansion of all-out ties on defensive issues between the two sides.

Meanwhile, Syria's official SANA news agency reported that Assad and Najjar reviewed the latest developments in the region, the cooperation between the two armies and means of bolstering the friendly ties between the two sides during the meeting.

Syria and Iran, both accused by Washington of supporting terrorism, have remained close ties since 1980s when Damascus sided with Tehran during the 8-year-long Iran-Iraq war.

Najjar, leading a senior military delegation, arrived in Damascus on Friday evening on an official visit to Syria.

Source: Xinhua

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