End the Lie

United Nations secretary-general: Iran no longer invited to Syria talks

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By End the Lie

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in 2009 (Image credit: World Economic Forum/Flickr)

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in 2009 (Image credit: World Economic Forum/Flickr)

Less than 24 hours after revealing that Iran had been invited to participate in the upcoming Syrian peace talks, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon withdrew the invitation, citing Iran’s statements made Monday.

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The withdrawal was announced shortly after the Iranian U.N. Ambassador said that his country would not join the talks if they were required to accept the roadmap laid out at a Geneva conference on Syria in 2012.

Ban’s spokesman Martin Nesirky said that senior Iranian officials previously made it clear that they understood the terms of their invitation to the talks, though they apparently rejected them today, the Associated Press reports.

“He continues to urge Iran to join the global consensus behind the Geneva Communiqué,” Nesirky said.

Nesirky said that Ban was “deeply disappointed” by the Iranian statements issued Monday.

In order to participate in the talks, Iran had to publicly commit to the formation of a transitional government in Syria that would eventually lay the groundwork for democratic elections.

The United States welcomed the withdrawal of the invitation.

“We are hopeful that, in the wake of today’s announcement, all parties can now return to focus on the task at hand, which is bringing an end to the suffering of the Syrian people and beginning a process toward a long overdue political transition,” said Jen Psaki, a State Department spokeswoman, in a statement, according to the Associated Press.

“The officials restated U.S. complaints about Iran’s role in Syria’s civil war, including arming Assad’s forces and sending fighters to assist his side,” according to AP.

Starting Friday in Geneva, the first face-to-face negotiations between representatives from the Syrian government and the opposition will take place.

Delegations from dozens of countries including Russia and the United States will begin talks on Wednesday in Montreux, Switzerland.

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One Response to United Nations secretary-general: Iran no longer invited to Syria talks

  1. Jay Kenney January 20, 2014 at 3:32 PM

    My, Gawd. I am tired of this whole quagmire. Just build a damn wall around the whole area and let them work it out between themselves. This area has been a mess for millennia. I hate myself for saying it, but I am so tired of the whole damn thing…



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