According to Iranian state media, Iran’s President Ebrahim Raisi will embark on a two-day visit to Damascus on Wednesday, in response to an official invitation from Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Iran’s ambassador to Syria, Hossein Akbari, stated that the visit is significant due to the changes and developments taking place in the region.
Regarding the planned visit, Iran’s ambassador to Syria, Hossein Akbari told IRNA news “Dr Raisi’s trip to Damascus next Wednesday is a very important trip due to the changes and developments that are taking place in the region.”
The visit comes amid a recent rapprochement between Iran and Saudi Arabia, as well as increased Arab engagement with Syria. As an ally of President Assad, Iran has provided financial and military support to his regime throughout the decade long Syrian conflict.
This visit will mark the first by an Iranian president to Damascus since 2011, with the last being in September 2010 by Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Iran supports several militant groups fighting alongside Assad’s regular armed forces, including Lebanon’s Hezbollah terror group.
Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian visited Lebanon’s border with Israel on Friday where he reiterated Iran’s support for Hezbollah and stated, “positive developments in the region will lead to the collapse of the Zionist entity.”