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Iran Appears To Reject Sideline Role In Syria Peace Talks

Source: RFE/RL

Iran appears to rule out any sideline role in an upcoming Syria peace conference.

The official IRNA news agency quoted Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Marzieh Afkham as saying on January 6 that Iran was ready to participate in the conference, dubbed Geneva 2.

But she said Tehran would only accept offers "that preserve the honor of the Islamic republic."

Afkham made the remarks when asked about a suggestion by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry that there might be ways Iran could "contribute from the sidelines" in the conference.

The United Nations has begun sending out invitations for countries to attend the meeting due to start January 22.

UN deputy spokesman Farhan Haq announced on January 6 that Iran is not on the first list of invitees to the talks.

He said Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov would meet on January 13 to discuss whether and how Iran could take part in the conference.

Based on reporting by AFP and Reuters

Copyright (c) 2014 RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

... Payvand News - 01/07/14 ... --

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