Call for Tehran Role in Syria Peace Bid

Call for Tehran Role in Syria Peace Bid
Call for Tehran Role in Syria Peace Bid

Austrian Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz says Iran’s involvement in international talks to find a solution to the lingering Syria conflict is essential.

“Iran’s participation in the next meeting in Vienna on the Syria is highly important,” Kurz said in a meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in the Austrian capital on Saturday, IRNA reported citing the national broadcaster ORF.

Russia, the United States, Saudi Arabia and Turkey held the first round of negotiations on the Syria crisis in Vienna on Friday. The next round of the talks is scheduled for Oct. 30.

“All players in Syria need to sit at the table to help advance efforts to settle the crisis,” the top Austrian diplomat said.

On differing views on the role of President Bashar al-Assad in Syria’s future, he said, “Making a decision about the fate of Assad is not the only way to put an end to the war in the country, but cooperation between Russia and the US to completely defeat terrorists could be an important part of the solution.”

Iran and Russia believe the Syrian people should decide their future in a free election and oppose the ouster of Assad by force. The two countries, which maintain that eradication of terrorism is a prerequisite for political efforts, have stepped up their military backing for the Syrian government’s campaign against militant groups fighting to topple Assad.