Iran denounces twin bomb attacks in Baghdad
Iran has strongly condemned the recent deadly terrorist attacks in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, saying the terrorists seek revenge from regional nations who oppose them.
Speaking at his weekly press conference on Monday, Iran’s Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hossein Jaberi Ansari expressed regret over the twin bomb explosions that killed more than 70 people and injured 100 others in Baghdad on Sunday.
Daesh Takfiri militants claimed responsibility for the blasts, which occurred in the mainly Shia Muslim district of Sadr City.
“These actions are the continuation of terrorist operations by Daesh in Iraq and the whole region, which have created insecurity and indicate that the terrorist groups are not after political settlement of the crisis, but seek to take revenge from regional nations,” he said.
Jaberi Ansari further offered Tehran’s condolences to the Iraqi government and nation and the bereaved families of the victims.
The western suburbs of Baghdad have recently been the scene of numerous militant attacks, which have inflicted heavy damage on the area.
Earlier on Sunday, security officials said the terrorists carried out bombing and shooting attacks against a barracks housing security forces in Baghdad’s suburb of Abu Ghraib, which is 25 kilometers (15 miles) west of the city center, killing at least 12 security forces and wounding 35 others.
Terrorists main obstacle to Syria truce
Jaberi Ansari also referred to the recently-negotiated truce in Syria, saying terrorist groups are the main obstacle to a peaceful resolution of the years-long conflict.
He stressed that foreign-backed terrorist groups are trying to impede the cessation of hostilities in the war-torn Arab country.
The terrorists are seeking to advance their interests through the continuation of the crisis and tension, said the Iranian official.
He further expressed hope that the international community would take measures to firmly and decisively combat terrorism and work towards a political settlement of the crisis based on the views of the Syrian nation.
The Islamic Republic of Iran has been calling for a political settlement of the Syrian crisis and will continue efforts in this regard, he added.
Jaberi Ansari further said that Iran’s presence in Syria is limited to providing advisory services upon the official request by Damascus.
A ceasefire agreed by the United States and Russia took effect in Syria on February 27 midnight Damascus time. The Syrian government accepted the terms of the truce on condition that military efforts against Daesh and the al-Nusra Front militants, who are excluded from the agreement, continue.
The Syrian army has managed to win back control of several areas in Latakia, a strategic province where the government of President Bashar al-Assad enjoys considerable support. However, militants, who Damascus says are backed by Turkey, have been operating in mountainous regions northeast of the province.
The foreign-sponsored conflict in Syria, which flared up in March 2011, has claimed the lives of some 470,000 people and left 1.9 million injured, according to the Syrian Center for Policy Research.
Zarif’s trip to 6 Asian states
Jaberi Ansari also said that Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif is scheduled to begin his tour of six Asian countries on March 5.
Zarif will start his trip by travelling to the Indonesian capital, Jakarta, where he is expected to attend a meeting of Islamic countries aimed at supporting al-Aqsa Mosque and the Palestinians.
Zarif, who will be heading an economic delegation, will then proceed to visit Thailand, Brunei, New Zealand and Australia, he added.
Foreigners complicate situation in Lebanon
Elsewhere, Jaberi Ansari said that the “intervention of certain foreign countries in Lebanon has complicated the situation in the country,” which has been without a head of state for months.
The Islamic Republic has always supported consensus between all political groups and currents in Lebanon, he said.
Jaberi Ansari expressed hope that the vigilance of the Lebanese political groups would prepare the ground for a national reconciliation in the country.
Lebanon has been without a president since May 2014, when former President Michel Sleiman’s term in office ended.
The election of a new president has been hindered by lawmakers from a number of different political parties, who boycott parliamentary sessions. The power vacuum, which has left the cabinet and parliament paralyzed, is considered the longest since 1990, which marked the end of Lebanon’s civil war.