'Iran to increase economic coop. with Syria amid US Caesar Act'

TEHRAN, Jun. 16 (MNA) – On his arrival to Moscow and ahead of his talks with Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said that Tehran would work to strengthen the economic cooperation with Syria amid the looming sanctions under the US Caesar Act.

In a Tuesday interview with the Sputnik, he said "We have strong economic relationships with Syria, and as for the latter, [it has] a credit line in Iran. We and our friends will work to develop the economic situation in Syria and enhance economic cooperation between Iran and Syria."

Iranian media believe that Zarif is going to discuss three issues in Moscow, namely, bilateral cooperation in economic, political, and cultural fields, regional developments in Syria, Afghanistan, and Yemen, and the JCPOA and ways to confront US hostile measures on the case. 

Zarif made a one-day visit to Syria in April 2020.

Heading an Iranian delegation, Zarif traveled to Istanbul on Sunday evening to meet with his Turkish counterpart.

He then left Turkey to Russia to meet with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. This is the 29th trip of Zarif, as Iran Foreign Minister, to Russia in the past 7 years.

The US House of Representatives passed the Caesar Act in December 2019, and President Donald Trump signed it on December 20, 2019, which has been in effect since early June 2020. According to this law, new sanctions will be imposed on individuals and institutions involved in the Syrian conflict and the country will face new financial restrictions. 

"I have determined that it is necessary to continue in effect the national emergency declared with respect to this threat and to maintain in force the sanctions to address this national emergency", Trump said in the letter to House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

On June 12, a member of the Syrian Parliament, Mohammad Fawaz, said that the US is committing war crimes by imposing new sanctions against Syria.

“After the defeat of its terrorist mercenaries in Syria, the US had no other option but to create starvation in Syria by imposing economic sanctions,” he said.

“Of course, the United States is not alone in this, and it has forced the European Union, as a partner in its crimes, to comply with these sanctions," Fawaz noted.

“The new sanctions indicate US defeat in the terrorist war against Syria, and it is implementing these sanctions in the hope of separating the Syrian people from the government,” he added.

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