Russian President Vladimir Putin has visited Syria to meet President Bashar Assad, a key Iranian ally.

Syrian media and a Kremlin spokesman announced Tuesday's visit, which came amid soaring tensions in the Middle East between Iran and the United States.

On Friday, a U.S. drone strike killed a top Iranian general who led forces supporting Assad in Syria's civil war.

The general's death has sparked calls in Iran for revenge.

Some 600 American troops are based in eastern Syria, making the country a potential site of conflict with Iran.

The slain Iranian general led Iran's armed support for Assad in Syria's now nearly 9-year-old civil war.

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