Iran’s top security official says the country will maintain its advisory role in Syria and continue support for resistance groups after the US demanded that Tehran put a halt to those activities.
“As long as the threat of terrorism exists in Syria and the country’s legitimate government persists in Iran’s advisory presence, we will stay in Syria,” Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani said on Saturday.
Shamkhani, in an interview with Doha-based Al Jazeera broadcaster, stressed that Iran’s presence in Syria is solely aimed at fighting terrorism at the invitation of the country’s “legitimate government.”
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Monday threatened Iran with the “strongest sanctions in history” if it did not comply with a list of steep demands, including the withdrawal of all forces under Iranian command in Syria.
Syria’s Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad responded by hailing Iran’s assistance to his country, stressing that the pullout of the Iranian military advisers from the Arab country was not up for discussion.
Shamkhani also dismissed other US demands, including its call that Iran halt all uranium enrichment, stop its ballistic-missile program and give nuclear inspectors access to the entire country.
“Iran’s missile program is completely indigenous and defensive. We will not seek permission from anyone to develop our defense power and will not hold negotiations on it,” he said.
Source » presstv