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Iran FM holds Damascus meeting en route to Ankara

Iran and Turkey’s foreign ministers will meet in Ankara tomorrow following the Iranian diplomat’s visit with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, raising speculation that he may be carrying messages from Damascus.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu shakes hands with his Iranian counterpart Javad Zarif during a news conference in Istanbul, Turkey October 30, 2018. REUTERS/Murad Sezer - RC15CF69EA60

Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif is due to hold talks with his Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu in Ankara tomorrow after meeting with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in Damascus, Turkey’s state-run Anadolu news agency reported today.

Syria will undoubtedly top the agenda in Zarif’s meetings in Ankara, where the Iranian diplomat’s trajectory will likely excite speculation that he may be carrying messages from Damascus. Assad and Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who together oversaw an unprecedented boom in bilateral ties, fell out with the outbreak of Syria’s civil conflict in 2011. The break was prompted by Turkey’s support for opposition rebels seeking Assad’s ouster that evaporated following Russia’s decisive intervention in favor of the regime.

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