Iranian Majlis Speaker Ali Larijani (1st left) shakes hands with his Swiss counterpart Filippo Lombardi on the sidelines of the 129th Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) Assembly in Geneva on October 9, 2013.
Iran’s Majlis Speaker Ali Larijani says the upcoming Geneva 2 conference on Syria must bring influential Syrian political figures together, and bar sponsors of terrorism in the Arab state.
“Geneva 2 conference can be productive if it invites influential Syrian political figures,” Larijani said in a meeting with his Swiss counterpart Filippo Lombardi on the sidelines of the 129th Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) Assembly in Geneva on Wednesday.
He added, “We oppose terrorism, and our nation has suffered a lot from terrorism. Therefore, we expect you (Switzerland) to prevent the spread of terrorism.”
The Iranian Majlis Speaker referred to terrorism and radicalism as the major threats in the Middle East, stating that certain countries adopt a tactical approach concerning the campaign against terrorism.
“They sometimes exploit terrorism to pursue their interests, and then confront it,” Larijani said.
The senior Iranian official described a tactical approach concerning the campaign against terrorism as a strategic blunder.
“Once terrorism spreads it cannot be repressed… we are now witnessing that Syria has turned into an archipelago of terrorists. It is necessary to adopt a global initiative in the campaign against terrorism otherwise it will become a global crisis,” Larijani said.
Lombardi, for his part, stated that the Swiss government is concerned about the Syrian conflict.
“Switzerland is trying to play a role in the resolution of the Syrian crisis through hosting Geneva 2 conference,” he stated.
On September 29, UN-Arab League Special Envoy to Syria Lakhdar Brahimi stated that it would be beneficial if Iran takes part in the Geneva 2 conference, noting that there is the possibility of inviting the Islamic Republic.
On August 12, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov described Iran as an important regional player that can greatly contribute to the settlement of the Syrian conflict, voicing Moscow’s eagerness for Iran’s participation in the conference
Syria has been gripped by deadly turmoil since 2011. Reports indicate that Western powers and their regional allies -- especially Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey -- are supporting the militants operating inside the country.
According to the United Nations, more than 100,000 people have been killed and millions of others displaced in the violence.