Wednesday Dec 18, 201310:22 PM GMT
Zarif, Ban urge political solution to Syria crisis
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (L) shakes hands with United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon at UN headquarters in New York. (file photo)
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif (L) shakes hands with United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon at UN headquarters in New York. (file photo)

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon have stressed the need for a political solution to the ongoing turmoil in Syria.

“The settlement of the crisis in Syria is viable only through a political solution,” Zarif told the UN chief in a telephone conversation on Wednesday.

He reiterated Tehran’s full support for any international efforts, namely those made by the UN, with the aim of promoting understanding among the parties involved in the conflicts raging in Syria.

Zarif, however, maintained that it is the Syrian people who can decide about the future of their country at the end of the day.

Ban underlined his efforts for the convention of the long-awaited Geneva II confab -- a second round of international negotiations on the Syria conflict to be held in the Swiss city.

The UN chief highlighted the significance of and the need for Iran’s participation in the conference, noting the United Nations has been seeking for an inclusive political solution to end the ongoing crisis in Syria.

More than 100,000 people have been killed in Syria and millions displaced due to relentless militancy that has been plaguing the country since 2011.

The deadly unrest is said to be fueled by Western powers and their regional allies -- especially Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey -- who have been arming, funding and training militants operating inside Syria.

During the phone call, Ban also welcomed the new trend in Iran’s negations with the permanent members of the UN Security Council – Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States -- plus Germany on the county’s nuclear energy program, which resulted in a landmark agreement between the two sides in late November.

MRS/AS/MHB

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