Iran's Supreme Leader has condemned the unrest in Syria as a deviation fomented by the U.S. and Israel against the Bashar Assad government, which stands on the front lines of resistance against Zionism.
Khamenei during a meeting with Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad in Tehran in August 2009
A report on his personal website describes a Thursday meeting between Ayatollah Khamenei, the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic, and various government and public representatives, where he accused the U.S. and Israel of interfering in Syria's internal affairs.
"The essence of the Islamic Awakening in the region is anti-Zionist and anti-U.S. But in the case of Syria, U.S. and Israeli hands are evidently at work," Ayatollah Khamenei said. "The logic and the standard of the Iranian people is that wherever slogans promote U.S. and Israeli interests, there must be a deviant movement."
The Supreme Leader's statements came one day after the U.S. slapped sanctions on the head of Iran's Security forces, Esmail Ahmadi Moghaddam, and his deputy, Ahmadreza Radan, for their alleged role in assisting the Syrian government with its crackdown on protesters.
Ayatollah Khamenei contended that the U.S. is trying to portray the events in Syria as similar to the uprisings in Egypt, Tunisia, Yemen and Libya. But, he insisted, Syria's situation is completely different.
The U.S. has imposed sanctions on the overseas branch of Iran's Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), the Qods branch, for its alleged involvement in the clampdown on Syrian protests.
Syria has denied receiving any assistance from Iran in its efforts to quell the unrest.
The Obama administration has already laid sanctions against the IRGC, the Basij militia, Iranian security forces and their leader, Esmail Ahmadi Moghaddam for alleged human rigths violations.
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