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Iranian President In Damascus

7 October 2004 -- Iranian President Mohammad Khatami arrived in Syria today in a previously unannounced stop at the end of a tour that has also taken him to Algeria, Sudan, and Oman.

Syrian officials say Khatami is expected to visit President Bashar al-Assad for talks on bilateral, international, and regional relations before returning to Tehran on 8 October.

President al-Assad visited Tehran in July for a two-day state visit, when he and Khatami jointly called for the departure of U.S. troops from Iraq.

Iran and Syria have boosted their relations since the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq. Both have been accused by U.S. officials of meddling in the affairs of their common neighbor.