Adherence to Redlines in Syria Talks Underlined

Adherence to Redlines in Syria Talks Underlined   Adherence to Redlines in Syria Talks Underlined

A senior official said Iran will actively participate in the new round of talks over the Syrian crisis while observing all the Islamic Republic's redlines.

Ali Akbar Velayati, a senior adviser on international affairs to the Leader of Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei, told IRIB on Saturday that Iran's participation in the meeting on the Syrian conflict, which is scheduled for November 12 in the Austrian capital Vienna, is by no means tantamount to a retreat by the Islamic Republic from its stance on the Arab country.

Velayati said Iran supports the Syrian people in their resistance against extremist and terrorist groups, whom he described as the "sworn enemies" of the Syrians.

The Syrian people are suffering and losing their lives due to acts of terrorism supported by "the West, particularly the Americans, the Zionists and reactionary [countries] in the region", he said.

The Leader's adviser emphasized that Iran would spare no effort to help the Syrian people not only in the defense sector but also in the political area.

"Undoubtedly, no one is entitled to interfere in Syria's domestic affairs," Velayati said, stressing that it is the Syrian people who should determine their own fate through intra-Syrian dialogue.

He emphasized that the Syrian government has proved that it deserves to be the guardian of its nation, adding that if an election were to be held today, Syria's incumbent President Bashar al-Assad would emerge victorious.

  Opposition to Assad's Overthrow

The top official also expressed the Islamic Republic's opposition to any plan that seeks to overthrow the Syrian president and said Tehran would only recognize plans that are accepted by the Syrian government and people.

Previous negotiations about the Syrian crisis were held in Vienna on October 30, with the participation of top diplomats from 17 countries, including Iran, as well as envoys from the United Nations and the European Union.

The participants agreed on respect for Syria's unity and sovereignty as well as eradication of extremist groups operating in the Arab country, stressing that the political process to end the bloodshed there "will be Syrian-led and Syrian-owned."

The foreign-backed militancy in Syria, which flared in March 2011, has so far claimed the lives of over 250,000 people and displaced millions.