Iran's Ahmadinejad begins visit to Syria

22:05, February 25, 2010      

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Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad started his two-day visit to Damascus on Thursday, Syria's official SANA news agency reported.

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad held talks with his Iranian counterpart on the bilateral relations and latest developments in the Arab and international arenas, according to the report.

The report, however, gave no further details about their talks.

The two presidents are to take part in the celebrations marking Prophet Mohammed's birthday, the report said.

Syria has been Iran's staunch ally in the Middle East for nearly three decades.

Ahmadinejad's visit comes a few days after Syria expressed its readiness to mediate between Iran and the West over Tehran's controversial nuclear program.

"Sanctions are not a best way to solve the problem between Iran and the West," Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem said on Saturday.

However, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Wednesday warned the relations between Iran and Syria.

Clinton said there is a "slight opening" in the relations between the United States and Syria, but cautioned that Damascus must take steps to boost stability in the Middle East.

In her testimony to U.S. lawmakers, Clinton said Washington remains troubled by suspected Syrian support for militant groups in Iraq and elsewhere, interference in Lebanon and Syria's close relationship with Iran.

Source: Xinhua
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