An Iranian deputy foreign minister has rejected claims about Tehran’s military presence in Syria, dismissing the allegations as a “blame game” orchestrated by the Syrian opposition groups.
“Iranian forces have never been, and are not present in Syria, and I deny this claim,” Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Asia-Pacific Affairs Abbas Araqchi said in Ankara on Thursday.
“The real enemies of Syria make such claims to provoke that country’s people [against Iran] and divert developments [in Syria] in the wrong direction,” said Araqchi, who is also Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman.
He emphasized that the crisis in Syria cannot be resolved through military means, adding that the unrest in the Arab country should be resolved politically.
Araqchi reiterated that Syria crisis will be definitely settled through comprehensive talks between the Syrian government and real opposition groups, not terrorists.
Unrest has gripped Syria for over two years now and many people, including large numbers of Syrian security personnel, have been killed in the turmoil.
On May 23, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad stressed his resolve to continue fighting terrorism while embracing a political solution to end the crisis.
“Syria is determined to tackle terrorism and those who support it regionally and globally, and to find a political solution to the crisis,” Assad said.
Iran has repeatedly voiced its opposition to any foreign interference in Syria’s internal affairs, calling for inclusive dialog and national reconciliation as well as free elections as keys to the settlement of the crisis in the country.