Iran urges political solution to Syria crisis

Tehran, May 17 (IANS) Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif said a military solution to the conflict in Syria is nothing but an “illusion”, the media reported on Tuesday.

“We are going to continue to insist on the need for a comprehensive ceasefire, of course excluding terrorist groups,” Xinhua quoted Zarif as saying after arriving in Vienna to take part in an upcoming International Syria Support Group (ISSG) meeting.

Political solution is the only way to solve the crisis in Syria, which has been gripped by foreign-backed militancy since March 2011, he said.

“Unfortunately there seems to be a persistence by some that they want to pursue a military solution; that illusion has to come to an end and they should look for a political solution,” he said.

Iran, the US, Russia, Turkey and Saudi Arabia as well as representatives from the European Union and the Arab League are among the countries participating in the ISSG meeting on Tuesday.

The 17-nation ISSG aims to discuss the stalled negotiations, challenges in maintaining the February ceasefire and the delivery of UN humanitarian aid to various areas across the war-ravaged country.

Iran, a major regional ally of the Syrian government in its fight against the militant groups, earlier announced the presence of its military advisers in Syria.

–IANS

py/vt

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