Annan: We Need Iran in Syria

Envoy meets with officials in Iran and Iraq
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 10, 2012 9:30 AM CDT
International envoy Kofi Annan, left, shakes hands with secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council, Saeed Jalili, as he arrives for a meeting, in Tehran, Iran, July 10, 2012.   (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi)

(Newser) – Iran must be "part of the solution" to the Syria crisis, international envoy Kofi Annan declared today, after meeting with Iran's foreign minister in Tehran. "My presence here proves that I believe Iran can play a positive role," Annan told reporters, saying he had "received encouragement and cooperation" from Iranian officials. Iran is a longtime Syrian ally, and has supported the Assad regime throughout the uprising, reports the AP. The trip is part of Annan's outreach to Syrian allies as he pushes to end violence there.

Neither Annan nor Iran's foreign minister specified what sort of help Iran might provide, and the Syrian rebels have said they don't want Iran to be part of any peace process. From Iran, Annan traveled to Iraq, another Syrian ally, where he will meet with Nouri al-Maliki to discuss much the same thing.

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