TEHRAN (Press Shia) – Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, discussed a host of topics, including the latest developments in the Middle East, political Deputy of Iran’s Presidential Office Hamid Aboutalebi said.

In a telephone conversation on Monday, Rouhani and Putin exchanged views about the latest developments in Iraq and Syria and stressed the need for an unceasing fight against terrorism, Aboutalebi said.

The two presidents also underlined the importance of efforts to preserve unity in Iraq and stability in the region, he said, referring to Iran’s concerns over the ongoing independence referendum in Iraq’s Kurdistan Region.

The official added that in the phone call, Putin hailed Rouhani’s recent speech at the United Nations General Assembly as well-thought-out.

As Iraq’s Kurds are rushing headlong into a vote for independence, neighbors and countries in the Middle East, including Iran and Turkey, were trying to persuade the Erbil government to cancel the referendum.

They warned that the vote could unleash ethnic violence, tear Iraq apart and fracture the forces combatting Daesh (ISIL) terrorists.

The UN Security Council has also warned of the potentially destabilizing impact of the planned referendum.