DUBAI -  Iranian President Hassan Rouhani called on Saturday for greater cooperation between regional rivals Iran and Turkey to help establish stability in Syria and Iraq.

"Today when the region is in a critical condition, cooperation and consultation by Tehran and Ankara in resolving issues can make a difference," Rouhani told visiting Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, Iran's state news agency IRNA reported.

"If major regional powers stand together, problems in Iraq and Syria will be resolved without the need for foreign powers," Rouhani added.

"Despite (their differences), the two countries' officials are looking for solutions and seeking to draw closer their points of views, especially on Iraq and Syria," IRNA earlier reported. "Preserving the territorial integrity and national unity of Iraq and Syria is in the interest of Iran and Turkey as well as that of regional peace and stability," Cavusoglu was quoted by IRNA as saying.

Iran is a main ally of President Bashar al-Assad in Syria's civil war, while Turkey has been one of his fiercest critics and has supported his opponents.

Iran has joined Iraq in criticising the Turkish military presence in northern Iraq, which Ankara has said is at the invitation of a Kurdish regional government.

Relations between the two neighbours appear to have improved after Iran supported the government of Turkey against a failed military coup in July.

Meanwhile, Turkish warplanes destroyed 12 Islamic State targets while one Turkish soldier was killed in a clash with militants during an offensive in northern Syria, Turkey's military said on Saturday.

Turkey and Syrian rebels are carrying out an operation to push the militants from the border after an air strike on Thursday killed three Turkish soldiers. The Turkish military believes the strike was carried out by the Syrian air force.

President Tayyip Erdogan discussed that attack with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin on Friday. Russia is Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's main military backer, while Turkey backs the rebels fighting to oust him.

The latest Turkish air strikes and clash occurred over the last 24 hours in a Turkey-backed operation by Syrian rebels, dubbed Euphrates Shield, to drive both the militants and a Kurdish militia away from the Syrian side of the Turkish border.

The Turkish soldier was killed in a clash as Syrian rebels gained control of northern Syria's Anifah district, the armed forces said in a daily statement on the operation. State-run Anadolu agency said three Turkish soldiers were also wounded in the clash. The death toll of Turkish soldiers in the Euphrates Shield operation, launched on August 24, is 18.

The killing of the Turkish soldiers on Thursday - the first anniversary of Turkey's downing of a Russian jet over Syria - raised fears of an escalation in an already complex battlefield. Ankara and Moscow only restored ties, which had been damaged by the jet incident, in August. While they continue to pursue conflicting goals in Syria, Turkey has of late been less openly critical of Assad than in the past.

Moreover, a string of explosions Saturday rocked a munitions storage site in northeastern Syria used by the US-led coalition battling the Islamic State group, a monitor and a local official said.

"At least five explosions occurred on Saturday morning at the arms and munitions depots in a base close to Tal Tamer" northwest of the city of Hasakeh, the head of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, Rami Abdel Rahman, told AFP.

He said the base was used by Kurdish forces from the People's Protection Units (YPG) as well as members of the international coalition fighting IS in Syria and neighbouring Iraq.

A local Kurdish official said a number of people were injured in the blasts and loaded on to ambulances.

Neither the Observatory nor the official could specify the cause of the blasts, and the coalition was not immediately available for comment. It was not clear if there were any US personnel on the base at the time of the blasts.

A witness told AFP that "successive explosions occurred between 10.30 am and 11 am (0830-0900 GMT)" and said ambulances and firefighters arrived swiftly on the scene.

The US on Thursday announced the death of an American serviceman in Syria, who was killed by an improvised explosive device.

For more than two years the United States has led a 66-nation coalition using air strikes against the militants' positions in Syria and Iraq.

Washington has also deployed special forces in Syria to advise the Arab-Kurdish alliance, the Syrian Democratic Forces, and improve the coalition's targeting of air strikes. As many as 300 US special forces personnel may be in Syria.