Iranian and Russian officials in a meeting in Moscow underlined development of all-out relations and cooperation between the two countries, specially in political and economic fields. The issue was raised in a meeting between Iranian Ambassador to Moscow Mehdi Sanayee and Vice-Speaker of Russia’s Upper House of parliament, the Federation Council, Ilyas Umakhanov, on Wednesday. During the meeting, the two discussed major bilateral, regional and international developments, including the need for Tehran’s participation in the Geneva II conference on Syria as well as strengthening bilateral cooperation, particularly in the field of economic and political activities. Umakhanov, for his part, stressed the need for making necessary moves to control the Syrian crisis. Similar meeting was earlier held between Sanayee and Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Michael Bogdanov, in which the pair discussed the recent developments in the Middle-East, particularly in Syria, and expressed hope that the International Geneva II Peace Conference would produce positive results. Bogdanov reiterated the importance of Iran’s participation in the Geneva II conference. Sanayee, for his part, said that whether Iran participates in the Geneva II conference or not, the Islamic Republic as always calls for a diplomatic solution to the crisis in Syria and opposes any violent transition of power in Damascus. On Thursday, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in a phone talk with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif reiterated the necessity for Tehran’s participation in the Geneva II conference on Syria due to be held on January 22. During the phone talk initiated by Ban, the two officials discussed the latest regional developments, specially in Syria. Ban Ki-moon outlined his moves, efforts and contacts to organize the Geneva II conference on Syria. The UN chief stressed all-out efforts of the United Nations and all effective sides and countries to work out a political solution and reach an agreement to settle the Syrian crisis. Zarif , for his part, underscored Iran’s clear and principled stances, and said settlement of Syrian crisis would be possible only through political approaches. The conflict in Syria started in March 2011, when sporadic pro-reform protests turned into a massive insurgency following the intervention of western and regional states. The unrest, which took in terrorist groups from across Europe, the Middle-East and North Africa, has transpired as one of the bloodiest conflicts in recent history. As the foreign-backed insurgency in Syria continues without an end in sight, the US government has boosted its political and military support to Takfiri extremists. Washington has remained indifferent to warnings by Russia and other world powers about the consequences of arming militant groups.