Qatar backs Syria political solution on Iran visit
Qatari foreign minister says ‘everyone’ agrees that the Syrian conflict should be ‘resolved through a political solution’
Qatar’s foreign minister said Wednesday his country and Iran both back a “political solution” to the conflict in Syria despite their support for opposite sides.
“Everyone is agreed on one point, that the Syrian crisis should be resolved through a political solution,” Foreign Minister Khaled al-Attiyah told a joint news conference in Tehran with his Iranian counterpart, Mohammad Javad Zarif.
“There is a difference of views despite other points of commonalities. We consider them (Syrian rebels) revolutionary people calling for their rights in the face of fire and bullets,” Attiyah added.
Qatar and Iran are at loggerheads over the three-year-old war in Syria that has torn the country apart and cost more than 140,000 lives.
Tehran is a staunch supporter of President Bashar al-Assad’s regime, while Doha is a key backer of the Syrian rebels fighting to oust him.
Influential Iranian MP Alaeddine Boroujerdi said Wednesday during a visit to Damascus that Qatar was no longer a major player on Syria.
“Today everybody knows that the Syria file is no longer in the hands of Qatar,” said Boroujerdi, who heads parliament’s national security and foreign policy committee.
“We expect Qatar to play a different role, a new role... different from its previous approach... for a page to be turned,” he said.
The MP was referring to reports of increased Saudi influence in the Syrian conflict at the expense of fellow Gulf state Qatar.
UK gets more time to quiz Guantanamo man over Syria ‘terror’Activist Moazzam Begg was arrested on suspicion of attending a terrorist training camp and facilitating terrorism overseas World News
2000GMT: UN calls on Syria to allow more humanitarian aidNews Bulletins
Syria agrees new April target to remove chemicals, diplomats saySyria should’ve handed over 1,300 tons of chemicals by Feb. 5 for destruction but only three cargoes were shipped out Middle East
Lawrence of Arabia’s bill unpaid, 100 years onA 23-year-old Lawrence enjoyed a few drinks in Syria’s Baron hotel, but left the 1914 bill unpaid Variety
3,300 people killed in Syria rebel infighting this yearThe Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said about 3,300 people have been killed in fighting between rebel factions and the Syrian army Middle East
1300GMT: Hezbollah vows to attack Israel in response to Syria border strikeNews Bulletins
Diplomats ponder aid to Lebanon in Syria’s wakeA string of car and suicide bomb attacks have targeted Hezbollah strongholds in Lebanon in recent months Middle East
Syria refugee children in Lebanon risk starvation, U.N. saysThere are around 200,000 Syrian children refugees in the neighboring country of Lebanon Middle East