TEHERAN (AFP) - Russian President Vladimir Putin's special envoy to Syria made a previously unannounced visit to Iran on Sunday (Dec 18) for talks with top officials on the Syrian conflict.
"The liberation of Aleppo (north of Damascus) was the result of the initiative by Iran, Russia and Syria and the resistance front" of Lebanon's Shiite group Hezbollah, said Ali Shamkhani, secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council, in his meeting with the envoy, Alexander Lavrentiev.
He called for increased cooperation between the Syrian regime and its allies, Iran and Russia.
"The liberation of Aleppo brought to light once again the policies of the West and their regional supporters in creating and backing terrorism," Shamkhani said, quoted by Mehr news agency.
Shamkhani voiced concern for the Shi'ite villages of Fuaa and Kafraya, which are under siege by rebels.
"While the Western-Hebrew-Arabic media have united to spread false information on the human losses in Aleppo, they remain silent on the need to evacuate the wounded and elderly from Fuaa and Kafraya," he said.
The Russian envoy's visit to Teheran came as dozens of buses began entering the last rebel-held parts of Aleppo on Sunday to resume the evacuation of thousands of trapped civilians and rebels, following a two-day suspension.
The main obstacle to a resumption had been a disagreement over the number of people to be evacuated in parallel from the two besieged Shi'ite villages.