Annan arrives in Tehran for talks on Syria

Annan arrives in Tehran for talks on Syria
# 10 April 2012 20:22 (UTC +04:00)
During his stay in Iran, Annan will hold talks on Syria with some Iranian officials including Foreign Minister Ali-Akbar Salehi, said the report.

Annan on Tuesday urged the Syrian authorities to "seize the opportunity to make a fundamental change of course" by immediately implementing a peace plan proposed by Annan and accepted by Damascus.

Annan made the statement in his letter to the UN Security Council Tuesday, the deadline for the Syrian military to withdraw from urban areas. A copy of the letter was obtained by Xinhua here.

"The Syrian leadership should now seize the opportunity to make a fundamental change of course," Annan said in the letter, adding "It is essential that the next 48 hours bring visible signs of immediate and indisputable change in the military posture of the government forces throughout the country."

Earlier, Iran’s foreign minister said that there is a way out of the current crisis in Syria, but the Syrian issue should be handled with "patience."

"Any hasty move about the Syrian issue and creating power vacancy in Syria could have serious detrimental consequences for the region," he said.

"We are hopeful about Annan’s mission on Syria and we think that the support of Turkey, Arabs and the United Nations to his mission can help settle the Syrian issue," Salehi added.

While the West, the AL and Turkey urge Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to step down following the alleged bloody crackdown on the opposition, Iran and a number of other countries are against such a move.

As long-time allies in the region, Iran has provided Syria with economic assistance over the past years to counter the international isolation and economic sanctions imposed on the country. The two countries have recently signed a series of agreements on economic cooperation in a bid to help Syria withstand new pressures.