Iran will not participate in Syria peace talks

Iran's UN ambassador confirms Iran will not participate in "Geneva II" as UN's Ban withdraws invitation to Tehran to attend the international meeting.

Iran will not participate in Syria peace talks
World Bulletin / News Desk
Iran said Monday that it would not accept any preconditions for participation in peace talks due to be held this week in Switzerland and the UN secretary-general withdrew his invitation to the country to attend.

Alireza Miryousefi, a spokesman for Iran at the United Nations, tweeted that "Iran will not accept any precondition and will not participate in Geneva II," echoing earlier remarks by Iran's top envoy to the UN.

"Islamic Republic of Iran does not accept any preconditions for its participation in Geneva II conference. If the participation of Iran is conditioned to accept Geneva I communique, Iran will not participate in Geneva II conference," Mohammad Khazaee, Iran's UN ambassador said earlier on Monday in a written statement.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon withdrew his invitation to Iran to participate in the peace talks later on Monday. Martin Nesirky, Ban's spokesperson, said the UN chief was "deeply disappointed" by the Islamic republic's move.

"The Secretary-General is deeply disappointed by Iranian public statements today that are not at all consistent with that stated commitment," Nesirky told reporters. "(Ban) continues to urge Iran to join the global consensus behind the Geneva Communiqué."

The UN secretary general extended the invitation to Iran on Sunday to attend the talks in Montreux, Switzerland, a move that has met objections and has been seen as a surprise by the US, although the UN spokesperson tried to convince reporters that the US and Russia were advised on every step on this diplomatic undertaking with Iran.

UN said that in "a series of meetings and telephone conversations, senior Iranian officials assured the Secretary General that Iran understood and supported the basis and goal of the Conference, including the Geneva Communiqué," but later decided to change that position.

UN stressed the Geneva Communiqué of 2012 remains also "the foundation for the negotiations between the Syrian parties" that will begin on Friday in Geneva.

In a press appearance on Sunday at the UN, Ban said he had spoken with Iran’s foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif on the issue.

"He has assured me that, like all the other countries invited to the opening-day discussions in Montreux, Iran understands that the basis of the talks is the full implementation of the June 30th, 2012, Geneva communiqué,” Ban said.

"Foreign Minister Zarif and I agreed that the goal of the negotiations is to establish by mutual consent a transitional governing body with full executive powers," he added. 

"It was on that basis that Foreign Minister Zarif pledged that Iran would play a positive and constructive role in Montreux."

The "Geneva II" conference, which is scheduled to convene Wednesday in Montreux, Switzerland, aims to end the ongoing violence in Syria.

More than 100,000 people have been killed in the three-year-old conflict in Syria, and more than two million Syrians have become refugees in the neighboring countries including Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq, according to the UN.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 21 Ocak 2014, 09:11