Iran’s Foreign Ministry Spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast says the remaining Iranian engineers, who were kidnapped by armed rebels in Syria, will return to the Islamic Republic soon. With the (Iranian) Foreign Ministry’s diligent efforts and active pursuit, the remaining engineers abducted in Syria will return to the country soon, Mehmanparast said on Monday. On June 29, two of the Iranian engineers abducted in Syria arrived in Tehran after almost six months of captivity. On May 16, another two Iranian engineers, who had been abducted by armed rebels in Syria, were handed over to the embassy of the Islamic Republic in Ankara. They flew to Iran and reunited with their families on May 17. The Iranian engineers were abducted while building a power plant in the district of Jandar, which is located some 30km south of Homs city and 140km northeast of the capital, Damascus.
On the recent developments in Syria, Mehmanparast said some Western countries attempt to represent a bleak image of Syria in order to satisfy their interests in the country, without paying attention to the decisions of the Syrian authorities.According to Mehmanparast, since Syria is at the forefront of the fight against the Zionist regime (Israel), it has consistently been the target of the West. He reiterated that the peace plan brokered by UN-Arab League envoy Kofi Annan can be implemented only if the demands of the Syrian people are met in a peaceful atmosphere. Annan’s six-point plan, effective from mid-April, calls for the establishment of a cease-fire between the government and the opposition and also says that humanitarian groups should be allowed to have access to the population, detainees should be released, and a political dialogue should be started. Syria has been experiencing unrest since mid-March 2011. The violence has claimed the lives of many people, including security forces. The West and the Syrian opposition accuse the government of killing protesters, but Damascus blames ‘outlaws, saboteurs, and armed terrorist groups’ for the unrest, asserting that it is being orchestrated from abroad. YH/GHN/HJL