Syria's Assad receives top Iran envoy: state media

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad (R) meeting with Saeed Jalili, a top aide to Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei in Damascus on August 7, 2012. — Photo AFP

DAMASCUS: Syrian President Bashar al-Assad received Saeed Jalili, a top aide to Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, on Tuesday, the official SANA news agency reported.

“President Bashar al-Assad has received Saeed Jalili, secretary of (Iran's) supreme national security council,” it said without giving further details.

Jalali was due to hold a news conference later following his talks in the Syrian capital.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran believes in national dialogue between all domestic groups to be the solution, and believes foreign solutions are not helpful,” Iran's state media quoted him as saying on his arrival from neighbouring Lebanon.

“We hope to take an effective step in regards to this new direction.”In Beirut on Monday, Jalili issued a veiled warning to countries backing the Syrian rebels.

“Those who believe that, by developing insecurity in the countries of the region by sending arms and exporting terrorism, they are buying security for themselves are wrong,” he told Lebanese Foreign Minister Adnan Mansour, according to Iran's official IRNA news agency.

“We believe that Syria's friends must help to totally stop the violence, organise national dialogue and general elections in this country, and send humanitarian aid for the Syrian population,” he was quoted as saying.

Iran, Assad's key ally, has been increasingly critical of support by the United States, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar for the rebels fighting Syria's armed forces.

The Syrian rebels and the United States in turn accuse Iran of providing military support to Assad's government, a charge Tehran denies.

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Comments (3) Closed

Aug 07, 2012 02:00pm
If USA, KSA, QATAR and other Arab countries can support Syrian rebels then why can’t Iran support Assad?
Aug 08, 2012 01:00pm
How can a 10% minority ethnic group rule the 80% majority group, it doesn't make sense. He should step down immediately or face the music.
Aug 07, 2012 09:21pm
Trying to help a drowing man can get you drowned as well. And not every Arab will shed tears should the Iran regime go down with Assad. Maybe we can get two nasty birds with the same stone.