Iran Deems Syria’s Future Important

Iran Deems Syria’s Future ImportantIran Deems Syria’s Future Important

A senior official said Syria’s political future is of high importance for Iran and no one but the Syrian people should decide about it.

In an interview with Al-Alam news network, Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs Hossein Amir-Abdollahian pointed to Friday's international talks on the Syrian crisis in Vienna, saying that unlike some countries, which were trying to include a timetable for transition of power and the ouster of President Bashar al-Assad in the final statement of the talks, Iran considers that the decision on Syria's leadership rests with the Syrians, IRNA reported.  Seventeen countries met in Vienna on Friday to discuss a political solution to Syria's crisis, but failed to reach consensus.

On the views of the meeting's participants, Amir-Abdollahian said the US is seeking Assad's ouster, so is Saudi Arabia, but the difference between the two is that "the Saudis want it to happen soon, while the US looks for a transitional process first".

The deputy foreign minister said Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir was insisting on deciding about the fate of the Syria's legitimate president instead of the Syrian people by ignoring the democratic process, while Iran, Russia and some others maintained that Syrians should decide about the future of their country, not foreigners.  Differences over Assad's future role between his allies and opponents have complicated efforts to end the four-year conflict.

"In the meeting, the Iranian delegation stressed that effective players must help fight terrorism and also the political process in which the government and opposition groups are able to reach a compromise, preparing the ground for people to make their choice regarding their leader," he said.  

Asked about his assessment of the meeting's result, Amir-Abdollahian said that although the difference in views was considerable, which was noted in the final statement, the participants agreed on basic principles, allowing for the next meetings to be held under the supervision of the UN. On Iran's future participation in the meetings, he said, "It depends on the course of talks. Of course, Iran will only participate in a meeting that would help the political process."

Commenting on the prospect of the success of political process, Amir-Abdollahian said while there is a strong foreign will for supporting militants, Syrian oil is being sold freely by the IS and the militants easily receive payments through the international banking system, neighboring countries allow terrorists to enter Syria and some international powers use them as a tool, providing sustainable stability and security in the war-torn country is not possible.