Iran Deplores US Decision to Arm Syrian Rebels
TEHRAN (Tasnim) – A senior Iranian foreign ministry official lashed out at the US for its decision to continue arming Syrian rebels, and said the move showed that Washington is not after resolving the crisis.
“Arming the irresponsible armed groups will not help end the ordeal of the Syrian people,” Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs Hossein Amir Abdollahian stated on Wednesday.
He added that had there existed a military solution to the Syria crisis, the conflict would have ended in the past three years.
Washington's contradictory behavior while the Syria peace talks are still underway in Switzerland shows that the White House has no plans to help end the Syria crisis, added the Iranian deputy foreign minister.
He also insisted that the Syrian issue can be resolved only through democratic means.
Also reacting to an Al Jazeera report on secret talks between the Iranian and Syrian officials during the recent Bern security conference, Amir Abdollahian said that the claim is "quite baseless."
The remarks by the Iranian official came after US and European security officials said that light arms supplied by the US are flowing to "moderate" Syrian rebel factions in the south of the country and the US funding for months of further deliveries has been approved by Congress.
The weapons, most of which are moving to Syrian rebels via Jordan, include a variety of small arms, as well as some more powerful weapons, such as anti-tank rockets, the Reuters reported.
The weapons deliveries have been funded by the US Congress, in votes behind closed doors, through the end of government fiscal year 2014, which ends on September 30, two officials said.
The apparently steady weapons flow contrasts with the situation last summer, when lethal US aid to the Syrian rebels dried up for a time due to congressional reservations.