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Iran should be part of solution to Syrian crisis: Annan

(Xinhua)

09:33, July 11, 2012

TEHRAN, July 10 (Xinhua) -- The UN-Arab League joint special envoy Kofi Annan said here Tuesday that Iran should be part of the solution to the long-standing Syrian crisis.

Speaking at a joint press conference with Iran's Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi, Annan said Iran could play a positive role in solving the Syrian crisis and should be part of the solution to the issue.

Annan called for negotiations between the Syrian government and all domestic political groups and urged all parties in Syria to end violence.

Salehi, for his part, called on related countries to be prudent over the Syrian crisis and warned against severe consequences of a "wrong" decision on Syria, saying "We should not allow the situation to become worse, which would not be anyone's benefit."

The Iranian foreign minister said the Syrian people are entitled to enjoy the basic rights, such as free elections, multiple parties, freedom, democracy and independence.

Annan arrived in Tehran on Monday to hold talks with high-level Iranian officials on the ongoing Syrian crisis.

He said earlier Monday in Damascus, after holding talks with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, that he concluded an "approach" with the Syrian leader regarding ending the violence, adding that the approach will also be shared with the armed opposition.

Iran, a close ally of Syria, says it strongly opposes to any form of foreign intervention in Syria, but calls on the Syrian government to listen to its people's demands and carry out reforms.

In the past months, some western countries accused Tehran of supplying weapons to Damascus to crack down on oppositions, a charge Iran resolutely denied.

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