Syrian President Bashar al-Assad says Iran has the right to peaceful nuclear technology, and says governments criticizing Tehran's nuclear efforts should first object to Israel's suspected nuclear arsenal.

Speaking Thursday after talks with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the Syrian leader said countries opposed to Iran's nuclear program have not provided a "convincing or logical reason" for their opposition.

The Iranian leader's two-day visit to Damascus comes as both countries face possible showdowns with the United Nations Security Council.

The United States and Europe want Iran referred to the Security Council over its suspect nuclear activities. The International Atomic Energy Agency is set to hear Western arguments on February 2.

The world body has also threatened action if Damascus fails to cooperate fully with a U.N. investigation into the killing of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.