Iran FM to meet with Turkish officials to discuss Turkish-Syria talks
The Iranian diplomat will be visiting Turkey upon Turkey's Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mevlut Cavusoglu's invitation.
Iranian news agency ISNA reported on Monday that Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian will be meeting a number of high-ranking officials in Turkey on Tuesday to discuss the situation in Syria and recent developments with the Russian, Turkish and Syrian defense ministers.
The Iranian diplomat will be visiting Turkey at Turkey's Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mevlut Cavusoglu's invitation.
On the agenda, Amir-Abdollahian will be meeting with high-ranking officials and will be discussing several topics including the situation in Syria, including scheduling the date of Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi's upcoming visit to Turkey.
On December 15, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said he had proposed to Russian President Vladimir Putin a prospective meeting between the presidents of Syria, Turkey, and Russia preceded by a meeting of the chiefs of security apparatuses and defense ministers.
Read more: Sources: Damascus still has not approved Syrian, Turkish FMs meeting
But Syria has so far shown signs of prudence to the peace process when on January 12, Syrian President Bashar el-Assad said that any rapprochement with Ankara must lead to the end of the Turkish occupation in Syria.
Moreover, high-ranking Syrian sources told Al Mayadeen last Thursday that "the government of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has electoral goals regarding the rapprochement with the Syrian leadership," and that "Damascus is not interested in offering them this card."
Besides the fact that Turkey illegally occupies several parts of northern Syria and has a number of military bases set up in the area, the Turkish government also backs local militias that fight against the Syrian government.
And on January 14, a foreign policy advisor to Erdogan, Ibrahim Kalin, said that a new ground offensive in Syria could be launched at any moment and that Russia's mediation in reconciliation efforts does not imply that Turkey has discarded the option of launching a ground offensive.
Read more: Amir-Abdollahian, Al-Assad discuss enhancing bilateral ties
Earlier today, it was reported that Russian President Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan discussed the rapprochement of ties between Ankara and Damascus.
"Issues of normalization of Turkish-Syrian relations were discussed, including in the context of Ankara's initiative to launch consultations with the participation of Russian, Turkish, and Syrian representatives," a statement by the Kremlin read.
"The practical significance of the joint work of Russia, Turkey, and Iran within the framework of the Astana process of promoting the Syrian settlement was also noted," it added.
Syrian Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad underlined on Saturday that Syria, "in all its moves since 2011 until this moment, seeks to end terrorism that has perturbed our relations with Turkey."
"The appropriate conditions must be realized in order to hold meetings at higher levels with the Turkish leadership," Mekdad said.
"It is not possible to talk about restoring normal relations with Turkey without uprooting the occupation," he added.
He also said that Damascus' coordination with Tehran in various regional and international frameworks was an indication of Iran's commitment to Syria's sovereignty and territorial integrity.