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Iran, Egypt to restore diplomatic ties

CAIRO — Iran and Egypt are moving toward restoring diplomatic relations that were severed more than three decades ago, Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi said in an interview published Tuesday.

Mr. Salehi said Tehran is keen on establishing relations of “friendship and brotherhood” with Cairo, Egypt’s state-run Al-Ahram newspaper reported.

“Egypt is the cornerstone of the region and has a special stature in the Arab and Muslim countries and we want relations of friendship and brotherhood with it,” Mr. Salehi said, adding that Tehran hopes to restore “normal” relations with Cairo. “We will pursue this path, and restoration of relations depends only on protocol measures.”

Mr. Salehi said Egypt’s “revolution opened a new chapter in Egypt’s relations with the outside world,” adding that the Islamic republic welcomes Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi attending a Non-Aligned Movement summit later this month in Tehran.


Clashes between Syrian groups spill across border, killing two

TRIPOLI, Lebanon — Clashes in Lebanon between supporters and opponents of Syrian President Bashar Assad’s regime have killed two people and wounded 45, security officials said.

The army said nine Lebanese soldiers were injured in fighting that broke out Monday night and continued Tuesday in the northern Lebanese city of Tripoli.

The mostly Sunni city also saw gun battles in May, when fighting over Syria killed eight people.

The latest clashes are between gunmen from a Sunni neighborhood and a rival district populated by Alawites, followers of an offshoot of Shiite Islam.

Mr. Assad is a member of Syria’s Alawite minority. Rebels fighting his regime are members of the nation’s Sunni majority.

From wire dispatches and staff reports