Iran's Salehi, Annan discuss latest developments in Syria

Iran Materials 30 June 2012 10:28 (UTC +04:00)

Iran's Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi and UN-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan have discussed the latest developments regarding the Syrian crisis, PRESS TV reported.

In a Friday telephone conversation, Annan elaborated on the latest viewpoints to be deliberated upon during an international conference on Syria on Saturday in Geneva, and underscored the importance of Iran's role with regard to settlement of the Syrian crisis.

Salehi, for Iran's part, clarified Tehran's position towards the Syrian nation and President Bashar al-Assad's reform plan.

He rejected any foreign intervention and terrorist activities against the Syrian nation and added, "The solution for Syria is merely diplomatic and the imposition of the viewpoints of others is irrational."

The Iranian foreign minister also praised Annan's efforts to resolve the Syrian crisis and expressed hope that the Geneva conference would yield constructive results.

The two sides reaffirmed their resolve to continue discussions on the future developments in Syria.

Despite insistence on the part of Annan, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, and Russia, a permanent Security Council member, to engage Iran in the efforts to resolve the Syrian crisis, the US and its Western allies opposed inviting the Islamic Republic to the Syria Contact Group meeting scheduled for June 30 in Geneva.

The United Nations has, however, said that Annan will engage Iran in efforts to restore calm in Syria.

Annan will brief Tehran after Saturday's international meeting in Geneva and "will also ensure their (Iranians') continued engagement," UN spokesman Martin Nesirky said on Wednesday.

Syria has been experiencing a deadly unrest since mid-March 2011. While the West and the Syrian opposition accuse the government of killing protesters, Damascus blames the violence on ''outlaws, saboteurs and armed terrorist groups'' funded and instructed from abroad.

Edited by: S. Isayev