Iran to walk out of Syria talks, if ‘unproductive’

Tehran, Nov 3 (IANS) A senior Iranian foreign official has criticised what it called Saudi Arabia’s “unconstructive” role in recent international talks on Syria crisis, threatening to walk out of the talks should the next meeting be “unproductive”, the media reported.

In the recent meeting in Vienna, “some countries, particularly Saudi Arabia, played negative and unconstructive roles, as they could not provide a logic for their positions vis-a-vis Syria’s conflicts”, Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African affairs Hossein Amir-Abdollahian was quoted on Monday by Iran’s Al-alam satellite TV as saying.

Tehran supports dialogue among Syrian political parties, and backs the formation of a front against terrorism in the Arab state, he said.

“If our assessment of the next talks is positive, we will continue to attend the next meetings,” he said. Otherwise, if the negotiations will be “a show” and rights of the Syrian people are ignored, Iran will pull out of the talks, he added.

Following the international talks on the future of Syria in Vienna on Friday, Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir said the talks should entail a decision on a date and means for the ouster of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad from the power, as well as the withdrawal of foreign forces, “especially Iran”, from Syria.

Iran, who participated for the first time in the talks on Syria, said that it would not accept pressure for the ouster of President Assad under the pretext of solving the Syria crisis.

Iran has emerged as a staunch regional ally of the Assad government in Syria’s long-lasting conflict, saying it would keep its “military advisors” in Syria to help the Syrian government in its struggle against militants.

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