Iranian FM’s visit to Turkey postponed in sudden ‘change to program’

"There has been a change in the program," an official said without giving any reason

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Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif's scheduled visit to Turkey on Tuesday has been postponed, a Turkish foreign ministry official told AFP.

"There has been a change in the program," the official said without giving any reason.

Zarif had been due to meet Turkey's leaders in the capital Ankara on Tuesday.

Although the Turkish side cited scheduling problems for the postponement, some media outlets claimed the visit was delayed because of an article Zarif penned for Turkish opposition daily Cumhuriyet.

In the piece published Tuesday, he criticized U.S. policies in the Middle East.

Turkey and the United States are NATO allies that have agreed to cooperate in Syria -- last month Turkey agreed to open up a southern base to U.S. and coalition forces for bombings against Islamic State militants.

Turkey and Iran are on opposing sides of the Syrian conflict, with Ankara a vocal opponent of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad while Tehran remains one of his few allies.