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Iran-Pakistan ties 

Iran’s president says the country seriously pursues efforts to boost economic ties with neighboring Pakistan. Ebrahim Raeisi says Iran follows a strategy to turn shared borders into a secure environment conducive to economic collaboration. Raeisi was speaking in a meeting with Pakistan’s Chief of Army Staff, Major General Asim Munir, in Tehran. The Iranian president said Tehran and Islamabad must work to develop border markets and boost energy cooperation through implementing previous agreements. Raeisi said Iran has prioritized developing relations with neighboring, Muslim and friendly nations. He warned that enemies are trying to disrupt relations between regional nations. The Pakistani general, for his part, hailed Iran’s policy of prioritizing ties with neighbors, saying this is a great opportunity for the Muslim world. General Munir said Pakistan is now focused on expediting efforts to ensure long-term security in border areas. He said increased economic cooperation would help boost the border region.

Iraqi PM in Syria

Iraq and Syria have discussed closer cooperation to tackle common challenges and further enhance bilateral ties. In a joint press conference in Damascus, Iraq’s Prime Minister Mohammed Shayya’ Al-Sudani and Syrian President Bashar al-Assad highlighted the importance of bilateral cooperation to ensure stability and security. The Syrian leader said Baghdad and Damascus should also forge closer cooperation with regional groups, including the Arab League. Assad added further meetings should be held in the future to further strengthen cooperation and relations. The Iraqi leader, in turn, said terrorism is a threat to both Iraq and Syria and to the whole region and should be tackled. He said Iraq and Syria should address their economic issues as well. This is the first trip to Syria by an Iraqi prime minister since 2010 when former Iraqi premier Nouri al-Maliki travelled to Damascus.

Russia-Ukraine war

Russia warns Ukraine against the use of cluster munitions against Moscow, saying it’s ready to retaliate with the same type of weapons. Putin said Ukraine’s counter-offensive against Russia has not been successful. He also said Russian specialists should examine captured Western military equipment to see if anything useful could be used in Russia’s own army. Ukraine has recently started receiving cluster weapons from its main supporter, the United States. Washington’s decision was opposed by many countries including the US allies. 

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