Iran Supreme Leader's aide, in Moscow, hails 'strategic' ties with Russia

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Elsewhere, Velayati said that both Iran and Russian Federation highlighted the need to continue cooperation in the region to support the legitimate governments of Iraq and Syria; President Putin agrees that this cooperation should continue in both the defense and the political sphere, he added.

A top adviser to Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei hailed his country's "strategic relationship" with Russian Federation on Wednesday during a visit to Moscow, part of a diplomatic offensive by Tehran as it braces for renewed U.S. sanctions.

On July 11, Putin held talks at the Kremlin with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who told the Russian leader that "Iran needs to leave Syria".

Speaking to reporters upon arrival in Moscow on Wednesday, Velayati lauded the "strategic" relations between Tehran and Moscow, expressing hope that his visit would be a turning point in bilateral ties.

Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qassemi said on Tuesday that the letters are aimed at "emphasizing the importance of expanded relations between Iran and Russia".

He added that the cooperation in the region between the resistance front led by Iran and Russian Federation against terrorism and its supporters in Syria and other regional countries was indicative of an exemplary, strategic and long-term partnership between the two countries.

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Velayati is among special envoys that Iran is sending to various countries in response to the USA withdrawal earlier this year from the 2015 nuclear deal.

Velayati reaffirmed Iran's firm intention to maintain its presence in Syria, but skirted a question about a possible pullback from the border, saying only that Tehran won't bow to US and Israeli coercion.

Iran has no intention of leaving Syria regardless of US and Israeli pressure, a senior envoy to Iran's leader said Friday, reaffirming a tough stance on the issue expected to top the agenda of the upcoming U.S.

Apart from the United States, the other signatories to the 2015 Iran nuclear accord - Russia, China, Germany, France and Britain - have said they still support the deal.

While disputes between Moscow and Tehran are reported to have surfaced over the presence of pro-Iranian militias in Syria, Iranian analysts warn of a "US-Russian" deal on Syria to the detriment of Iranian interests.

Tehran has conditioned its stay in the deal to practical European strides to make sure Iran's dividends from the deal would not be affected when U.S. sanctions "snap back" in August.

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