TEHRAN (Press Shia Agency) – The director general of the Iranian Foreign Ministry's office for the Middle East and North Africa, Mohammad Irani, held talks with China’s special envoy to Syria Xie Xiaoyan on a range of issues, including the latest efforts to resolve the protracted crisis in Syria.

In the meeting held in Tehran on Sunday, Xiaoyan reiterated Beijing’s support for the independence and national sovereignty of Syria and said his country is resolved to combat terrorism and extremism across the world.

He further hailed the growing relations between China, Iran, and Syria and said his country is ready to boost cooperation in the fight against terrorism.

The Iranian diplomat, for his part, pointed to the common stance of Iran and China on the Syrian developments and stressed the need for closer Tehran-Beijing cooperation to help end the crisis in Syria and contribute to the Arab country’s reconstruction.

Syria’s warring sides have so far attended five rounds of peace talks brokered by Iran, Russia, and Turkey in the Kazakh capital of Astana. The fourth round of those talks in May produced a memorandum of understanding on de-escalation zones in Syria, sharply reducing fighting in the country.

The agreement also envisages the creation of conditions for the delivery of medical assistance, restoration of damaged infrastructure, and the return of displaced civilians to their homes.

Over the past six years, Syria has been fighting foreign-sponsored militancy. UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura estimated in August 2016 that more than 400,000 people had been killed in the Syrian crisis until then. The UN has stopped its official casualty count in Syria, citing its inability to verify the figures it receives from various sources.

Tehran insists that the Syrian nation is the only side that has the right to shape the future of its own country, rejecting foreign intervention with the use of force.