May 9, 2019
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has met today (Wednesday) with his Iranian counterpart Mohammed Javad Zarif in Moscow.
Their meeting focused on developments in Syria, especially in the northern region, Ankara’s willingness to establish a security zone along its borders with the war-torn country, and the Iranian nuclear crisis.
The two parties seek “coordinating positions” on international and regional issues, especially in regards to the Syrian crisis, according to Russia’s Foreign Ministry.
“The two ministers have also discussed the current situation of the multifaceted relations between Russia and Iran and the concrete steps to continue their progress,” the statement added.
Zarif paved the way for his discussions in Moscow by emphasizing that “Syria’s stability and security are linked to securing the Syrian-Turkish border, taking into account ending Ankara’s legitimate concern.”
He stressed that “good relations among regional countries are beneficial to the whole region, noting that fixing relations between Ankara and Damascus lies in the region and the countries’ interest.
This indicated a previous suggestion by Tehran to play a role in opening communication channels between Turkey and the Syrian government.
When asked about Washington’s relationship with Kurds and its current understandings with Ankara about the “safe zone” in the north, Zarif said Iran had to wait more and monitor future developments.
“It is not yet time to provide a detailed analysis of Washington’s intention to withdraw from Syria.”
Meanwhile, Chief of the Russian Reconciliation Center for the Opposing Sides in Syria Major General Viktor Kupchishin told a press conference that Hmeymim air base was shelled from multiple launch rocket systems on Monday.
“Both times, fire was delivered from the eastern direction from the area of Zawiya settlement located in the Idlib de-escalation zone and controlled by the Hayat Tahrir al-Sham group (Nusra Front, banned in Russia),” Kupchishin explained.
“In total, 36 rockets were fired,” he added, noting that the militants fired using a drone.
He said the attack had been repelled by the air defense forces on duty, adding there were no deaths or destruction at the air base and that all the points from where militants had been firing their rockets were detected and suppressed by Russian Aerospace Forces and artillery fire of the Syrian regime troops.