Iran’s Minister of Roads and Urban Development Rostam Qasemi says the end of war in Syria is the beginning of a new era of economic relations between the two countries.Qasemi is heading an economic and political delegation on a 3-day visit to Syria. He will meet with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and other top officials. The Iranian minister has said his talks with the Syrian officials will cover various fields including industry and construction. Upon his arrival in Damascus, Qasemi was welcomed by the Syrian economy and trade minister. Mohammad Samer Al-Khalil said his country seeks extensive cooperation with Tehran. Iran has been a major contributor to Syria’s reconstruction efforts in recent years as the country struggles to emerge from the ruins of the war that devastated its economic infrastructure.
Nato Russia meeting
Russia and the western military alliance, NATO, are holding talks aimed at easing tensions escalating over Ukraine. The meeting is the first between Moscow and NATO since 2019. Russia is expected to lay out its demands for security guarantees, including the one that Ukraine won’t join NATO. Russia sees NATO’s expansion eastward as a threat to its security. The alliance, however, accuses Russia of preparing to invade Ukraine. The US has made the same accusation, leading to heightened tensions with Russia. The two held talks in Geneva on Sunday and Monday to resolve their differences. Moscow said the talks provided no ground for optimism.
US flights blocked
An ongoing covid surge in the United States makes China cancel dozens of flights to and from that country. Beijing in recent weeks has blocked more than two dozen flights from the US, after numerous passengers tested positive upon arrival in China. More than 40 US-bound flights operated by Chinese carriers have been canceled too. That comes as the US is facing a dramatic rise in its covid infections driven by the highly contagious Omicron variant. On Tuesday, the country logged a record of more than 1.3 million new cases in a 24-hour period. That was the highest daily total of any country in the world.