Iran commented on the meeting that took place in Moscow between Turkey, the Syrian regime and Russia, a few days ago, which did not go beyond the scope of officials of the three parties, according to official statements.
Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kanaani said in a press briefing on Monday, in response to why Tehran was absent from the meeting: “Iran has always insisted on a political solution and not a military solution, and it insists on this position regarding Syria.”
“The countries of Syria, Russia and Turkey have recognized the crucial role of the Islamic Republic of Iran in fighting terrorism in Syria, supporting the government and people of the country, supporting the territorial integrity of this country and the process of resolving the Syrian crisis,” he added.
“These countries are aware of the importance of this role in completing the Syrian process.”
Tehran officials were not present at the “Moscow meeting”, which three days ago included the defense ministers of Turkey, Russia and the Syrian regime, and intelligence chiefs from the three countries.
This is indicated by the official version of Moscow, the Assad regime and Ankara, and according to Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu. It is scheduled to hold a second meeting in the second half of January, at the level of foreign ministers.
The meeting, which took place in Moscow, is seen as the second of a series of stations for a roadmap announced by Turkish President Erdogan in recent weeks to open dialogue with the Syrian regime– with Russian mediation.
The “map”, according to Erdogan’s previous words, is that “our intelligence organizations unite”, then “our defense ministers must meet”, and then “our foreign ministers meet”, culminating in the third station “meeting as leaders”, in reference to the President of the Syrian regime, Bashar al-Assad, and his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu described the trilateral meeting as a “useful meeting.” Before that, the Turkish defense statement said it was held in a “constructive atmosphere,” as did Assad’s Defense Ministry, which added that it was “positive.”
Cavusoglu said on Thursday that “communication with the regime is important to reach a political solution for lasting peace and stability, and this participation is important in terms of reconciliation between the regime and the moderate opposition on the roadmap.”
He added on Saturday after he made contact with his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov: “The date of the meeting with the Syrian regime at the foreign level may be in the second half of January and in a third country.”
Although it was expected and paved the way for many statements, the meeting, which brought together Ankara and Assad regime officials at the level of defense ministers, caused a state of “shock and anger” within the revolutionary street in Syria. It prompted the ignition of popular demonstrations that withdrew throughout the regions of northern Syria.
Hundreds took part in these demonstrations two days ago, in which protesters carried banners against the Assad regime and the steps and attempts to float it.
They also chanted slogans in which they stressed the constants of the Syrian revolution, stressing: “We will not reconcile with the regime. We will continue the revolution until it is overthrown.”
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.