President: Initiators of War on Syria to Suffer Most
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – As there is optimism a Russian initiative on Syria might help avert a possible US strike, Iran's president said the initiators of a possible intervention would have to pay a huge price for their move.
“Our entire efforts have been focused on preventing war and this idea has gained momentum this week thanks to efforts and initiatives of some countries. We hope there will be no war, but if there was one, the warmongers would have to pay dearly for it,” President Hassan Rouhani said on Tuesday.
He referred to the strong opposition of the international community, and the public opinion in the West to war,and said, "As you see, even the closest US ally, Britain, could not get the approval of parlaiment to join the US in a possible attack on Syria. It was not because the lawmakers liked the Syrian government, but because they know the consequences of war.”
Most people in Europe and the US are opposed to military attack against Syria. The latest opinion poll shows public opposition to involvement in the Syrian conflict is growing, with six out of 10 Americans against missile strikes and lawmakers also divided. The figure for those against military strike is even higher in Europe.
But a political initiative, this time from Moscow, seems to have temporarily muted the clamor of those who are calling for military action.
Russia proposal involves placing chemical weapons storage sites of Syria under international control, with the aim of their subsequent destruction.
US President Barack Obama said he will put plans for a US military strike against Syria on hold if the country agrees to place its chemical weapons stockpile under international control.
Obama's comments came in interviews late on Monday as the US Senate decided to delay its vote on military action - capping a day of shifting positions from within the administration and on Capitol Hill.
The US president told ABC News that any strike against Syria would "absolutely" be put on hold if Syrian President Bashar al-Assad were to turn over the weapons.