Any peace plan must respect Syria interests: Velayati

April 23, 2016 6:04 pm

Ali Akbar Velayati, a senior advisor to Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei

A senior Iranian official has rejected as “unacceptable” any peace plan that would run contrary to ’s national interests, reaffirming Tehran’s support for the legitimate government of President Bashar al-Assad.
On Saturday, Ali Akbar Velayati, a senior advisor to Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei, said would keep up support for Syria’s “territorial integrity, independence as well as the legitimate government of President Bashar al-Assad,” which has been elected by Syrian people.
Velayati, who was speaking in a meeting with Syrian Ambassador to Tehran Adnan Hassan Mahmoud, further said any peace initiative that fails to meet the interests of Syrians would not be accepted.
The Iranian official praised the recent parliamentary elections in the violence-hit country, saying the polls showed the Damascus government attaches significance to the nation’s right to decide its fate.
He also slammed certain countries for plotting to topple the Damascus government and said the US and other sponsors of Takfiri terrorists will fail in their attempts to install a puppet regime in Syria.
Commenting on the presence of Iranian military advisers in Syria, Velayati said Tehran’s advisory mission comes at the request of the Syrian government and does not need the permission of other states.
The Syrian diplomat, in turn, thanked the Iranian nation and government for standing by his country in the fight against foreign-sponsored terrorist groups.
Damascus will make all efforts to reach a peace plan that would be in line with the Syria nation’s interests despite attempts by the Saudi-backed opposition to derail the peace talks, he stressed.

A session of talks on the Syria crisis in Geneva, Switzerland, on April 20, 2016 ©AFP

He further said the initiatives put forward by the Saudi-backed opposition during the negotiations resemble those of Israel, criticizing certain Arab states for failing to adopt a proper stance in the face of Israeli acts of aggression.
The meeting comes as the latest round of Syria peace talks are underway in Geneva, Switzerland, in an effort to find a peaceful solution to the deadly crisis that has reportedly claimed over 400,000 lives.
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