EU’s Blacklisting of Syrian FM Meant to ‘Obstruct’ Peace Process: Iran

Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh has slammed the European Union for its unreasonable, non-constructive, and unwise decision to blacklist Mr Faisal Mekdad, the Syrian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates.

In a statement on Saturday, Khatibzadeh said the EU’s move to sanction the Syrian foreign minister will escalate the crisis in the Arab country and further complicate the political settlement of this crisis.

“Such an unpleasant measure will only result in further divergence and distrust between Brussels and Damascus. At a time when the Syrian crisis needs a political solution, blacklisting the country’s foreign minister as the person in charge of Syria’s foreign policy means nothing but obstructing the peace process,” the Iranian spokesman said.

He strongly called on the European Union to reconsider its decision, especially at a time when it was expected to condemn the Zionist regime’s attacks and aggression against the Syrian territory in violation of the country’s national sovereignty and territorial integrity, and express its serious opposition to the US’ unjust sanctions against the Syrian nation.

Khatibzadeh described the decision as unwise.

The European Union added Mekdad to its sanctions list on Friday.

“As a Government Minister, [he] shares responsibility for the Syria regime’s violent repression against the population,” the European foreign affairs ministers said.

Mekdad was appointed as Syria’s top diplomat in November 2020.

The EU has imposed sanctions against the Syrian regime since 2011. The restrictive measures include travel ban and asset freeze for Syrian government officials and prominent business people benefiting from the war economy.

The sanctions also prohibit the import of oil, and apply export restrictions on equipment or technology that could be used for the war.

In total, 289 Syrian individuals and 70 entities are blacklisted by the EU.

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