The Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister has announced the formation of a “friends of NAM” group, including Iran, Venezuela and Egypt, that will seek to resolve the Syrian crisis.
Hossein Amir-Abdollahian commented on Egyptian President Mohammad Mursi’s condemnation of the Beshar Assad regime, saying: “If Mursi was better informed about Syria, he would change his views.”
On Thursday, at the meeting of NAM state leaders, Mohammad Mursi referred to anti-government protests in Syria as part of the “Arab spring” uprisings and slammed the Assad government as an oppressive regime.
Iran, on the other hand, has been supportive of the Assad government and holds to the position that protests are being fomented by foreign intervention.
The Deputy Foreign Minister referred to efforts by “Iranian enemies” to change the venue of the NAM summit and to dissuade leaders from attending the summit in Tehran, saying: “Iran hosted the 120-member NAM summit at its very height and is in no way isolated on the international scene.”
He cited how Mohammad Mursi attended the meeting in Tehran despite Western pressure to stop him from visiting Iran.
He added: “Many of Mursi’s views are compatible with those of Iran and only on some issues, such as the case of Syria, he has a different stance.”
Despite opposing views on the Assad government, Iran and Egypt have both stated their opposition to foreign military intervention in Syria.
Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister went on to stress that Iran insists on finding a peaceful solution to the Syrian conflict, and the establishment of the friends of NAM group to resolve the Syrian problem with the participation of Iran, Venezuela and Egypt is a major step toward such a solution.