UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon met with Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei on Wednesday, discussing such issues as Iran’s nuclear program, the Syrian crisis and human rigths issues.
The UN Chief told reporters following his meeting with Ayatollah Khamenei that he has discussed his concerns about human rights violations with Iranian authorities, and Martin Nesirky, spokesman for Ban Ki-moon, also told reporters in New York that the UN Secretary General has condemned recent remarks by Iranain leaders about Israel.
Iranian media focused their reports on statements by Ayatollah Khamenei who reportedly told the UN chief that Iran is committed to keeping the Middle East free of nuclear weapons and condemned the alleged support for Israel by the U.S. and other world powers that, according to Iran’s Supreme Leader, have equipped it with nuclear weapons, thus threatening peace in the region.
While UN spokesman indicated that Ban Ki-moon expressed his concern about the slow progress in the nuclear talks, Iranian media reported that Ayatollah Khamenei maintained that while Iran has cooperated widely with the International Atomic Energy Agency, the agency has failed to provide Iran with technical and scientific assistance in the development of nuclear energy as allowed by its own regulations.
Iran’s leader has also criticized the IAEA for failing to take a firm stance against cyber-attacks such as the Stuxnet assault on Iran’s computer systems.
In terms of the Syrian conflict, Nesirky reported that the Secretary General opposed further militarization of the situation and urged Iranian leaders to use their influence to end the violence in Syria.
Ayatollah Khamenei reportedly expressed Iran’s readiness to assist in resolving the Syrian conflict, stating that the only solution is to cut off “the flow of arms to groups inside Syria that are not accountable for their actions.”
“The countries that have begun a proxy war in Syria also impeded Kofi Annan’s peace plan from taking effect in that country,” Iran’s leader said.
The United States and Israel.have been working hard to isolate Iran from the international scene and had strongly advised Ban Ki-moon against attending the NAM Summit in Tehran.
The UN Secretary had decided on attending the summit saying while hosting the NAM summit focuses attention on Iran, it also makes the country focus on its international responsibilities.