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Tehran dismisses as hackneyed Erdogan’s anti-Iran claims

28 December 2015 12:40

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Iran has dismissed as hackneyed the recent allegations by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan against the Islamic Republic over Tehran’s policies in Syria.

“This is not the first time that such rhetoric are used against the Islamic Republic of Iran with specific political objectives and in the frameworks of the ongoing conflicts in the region,” Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hossein Jaberi Ansari said during his weekly press briefing on Monday.

He added that Iran has adopted a “transparent” policy regarding the developments in Syria and the region.

Erdogan had a day earlier accused Iran of adopting “sectarian” policies in Syria by putting its weight behind Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Jaberi Ansari said that Iran’s policies regarding the crisis in Syria is based on “the legitimate” right of the Syrians to decide their own future.

The Iranian official further expressed the Islamic Republic’s opposition to employing terrorism as a tool for achieving political objectives.

Syria talks

Pointing to the third round of international talks on the Syrian crisis which was held in New York earlier this month, Jaberi Ansari said that the Iranian delegation, headed by Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, managed during the meeting to block efforts by some countries to include some Iranian bodies in the list of terrorist groups present in Syria.

He said that certain Iranian institutions and organizations were proposed to be added to the catalog, which had been prepared by Jordan following the previous round of Syria talks in the Austrian capital, Vienna.

The Iranian foreign minister reacted to the proposed list, saying that if the list was to be released, Iran would in turn also introduce “many other institutions and organizations” to be included on the roster, Jaberi Ansari said.

He noted that following Iran’s protest, the list was discarded and a working group consisting of Iran was formed, certain members of which will now decide about the list of terrorist groups.

He said that there are certain groups, including Daesh and al-Nusra Front, which are considered terrorist by all the participants of the Vienna meeting.

Vienna hosted the first two rounds of talks on Syria on October 30 and November 14. The third round of Syria talks was held in New York on December 18.

On December 18, the UN Security Council adopted a resolution supporting an international roadmap for a peace process in Syria. The resolution came after the third round of Syria talks in New York. The world body seeks to convene peace negotiations in Geneva sometime in January 2016.

Participants in the talks are trying to work out a list of legitimate opposition groups, as opposed to terrorists, in Syria to engage in talks with the government in Damascus.

The foreign-sponsored conflict in Syria, which started in March 2011, has claimed the lives of more than 250,000 people and left over one million injured, according to the United Nations. The foreign-sponsored militancy has also displaced nearly half of the country’s population.

Syria blames the crisis on some countries, including Turkey and Saudi Arabia, saying that if it had not been for their support, the terror groups, particularly the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group, could have never taken control of the territories across the country.

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