Top Iranian and Russian security officials discussed ways of boosting security and establishing a ceasefire in crisis-hit Syria.
Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani has talked over the phone with Secretary of the Russian Security Council Nikolai Patrushev as part of consultations between the two sides on the situation in Syria.
According to a Farsi report by IRNA, in their phone conversation, the two discussed the latest political and security developments in Syria as well as Tehran-Moscow cooperation on the Syria crisis.
During their discussions, Shamkhani highlighted the necessity to follow up and continue the political negotiations underway between the Syrian government and armed opposition groups. He said due regard should be paid to Syrian people’s right to self-determination as well as refraining from exerting foreign pressure during the process of political talks.
“With closer consultations and cooperation between the three countries of the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Russian Federation and Syria, a clear trend has started to [help] diminish the power and sphere of influence of terrorist groups, and establish a ceasefire in order to ensure people’s security. This trend should continue as new measures are adopted to meet Syrian people’s demands,” said the Iranian official.
Shamkhani referred to the start of a fresh round of talks in the Kazakh capital, Astana, and the process which has kicked off to help establish and sustain a ceasefire in Syria, and added the successful experience of initiating the Astana negotiations showed focusing on solutions which are based on regional cooperation can give fresh impetus to efforts aimed at ending the security crisis in Syria.
The Russian official, in turn, underlined the necessity of pressing ahead with consultations between the two countries in order to expedite the realization of political solutions, and said some extra-regional players ignore the need for the maintenance of Syria’s territorial integrity and national sovereignty amid machinations aimed at disintegrating Syria.
He said the establishment and maintenance of a ceasefire in Syria and drawing on new political initiatives can help foil the dangerous plot to disintegrate the country.
Patrushev described the Astana talks as a successful initiative to help settle the Syria conflict and noted Iran and Syria should tap into the existing potential to influence the warring sides in a bid to prepare the ground to sustain the ceasefire in the country.