Lakhdar Brahimi, the United Nations envoy for Syria, said Saturday that Iran should be invited to participate in the proposed Syria peace talks in Geneva, as reported in Iran's Press TV.
"We believe that the participation of Iran in the Geneva conference is natural and necessary as well as fruitful, so we are hopeful that this invitation is made," Lakhdar Brahimi told a news conference in Tehran, according to Press TV, which translated his live remarks into English.
"The secretary-general of the United Nations, I and lots of other people, we are waiting, we want to see Iran take part in the conference," he said.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, speaking at the same news conference with Brahimi said Iran would take part in the Geneva conference if invited.
"(We would) participate with the aim of coming up with a political solution by providing the possibility for various Syrian sides to negotiate with each other," Zarif said, according to Press TV.
Brahimi's observations will be welcomed by President Bashar al-Assad, as Reuters reported, Iran has been his strongest support in the Syria's civil war. Saudi Arabia and other Gulf Arab states support mainly Sunni rebels as they try to overthrow President Assad's regime.
Confusion, however, continues to prevail on the exact date of the peace talks, popularly known as Geneva II. Several officials, including Arab League Chief Nabil Elaraby, had said the talks will begin Nov. 23. The UN, U.S. and Russia, however, say that no date has been officially set for the peace conference.
Washington has already said it would be more open to Iran taking part in the Geneva conference if it publicly supported a 2012 statement calling for a transitional authority to rule Syria. Iran, however, has rejected any preconditions for taking part.
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