Iranian Ambassador Blames Foreign Forces for Syria Blast

With Iran clearly thrown by Wednesday's blow to its ally, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, As-Safir reports that Iran's ambassador to Lebanon blamed foreign powers for the attack and reaffirmed Tehran's support for the regime, which he said would soon "tighten its iron grip."

al-monitor The coffin of the late Syrian Defense Minister Daoud Rajha is seen during his funeral in Damascus July 20, 2012. Rajha was killed by a bomb which exploded during a meeting of ministers and security officials July 18, 2012. Photo by REUTERS/Khaled al-Hariri.

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interview, bombing at the syria national security headquarters, violence, syrian crisis, syrian, syria, iranian ambassador to lebanon, iran, ghadanfar roken abadi, free syrian army, bulgaria bomb, bulgaria, bashar al-assad

Tem 20, 2012

Iran will not deviate even an iota away from supporting the Syrian regime. Most importantly, Iran will not lose confidence in the regime, even if it seems like it is beginning to lose influence in periods of weakness. Tehran’s position regarding Wednesday’s [July 18] blast — which targeted senior Syrian officials and revealed how dangerously the state’s security has been penetrated — is the best evidence of its support for the Syrian regime. The Iranian ambassador to Lebanon Ghadanfar Roken Abadi confirmed Iran’s position to As-Safir, saying: “The explosion gives the Syrian regime a powerful card to play.”

Abadi was asked how this is possible when the regime itself was the target. He admitted that the bombing was “a hard blow” to the regime, but it will allow it “to become even more intransigent with terrorists, allowing [the regime] to completely tighten its iron grip.” However, Abadi believed that this card “will most importantly strengthen Russia and China’s support for the regime, thus allowing the regime to better withstand the blackmail and pressures that it faces.”

The Iranian ambassador firmly said that “the regime continues to enjoy large popularity, as the opposing parties have confirmed. In fact, a strike against the regime is a strike against the people. Therefore, these terrorists will not achieve results that are in their interest.”

Abadi recalled the first days of the Islamic Revolution in Iran, when many officials were subjected to assassination and liquidation attempts, including those who have now become candidates for the revolution’s current leadership. He said, “We thought back then that the revolution ended, but it didn’t ... Thus, what happened in Syria the day before yesterday [July 18] doesn’t mean that the regime, which supports the resistance [against Israel], has been overthrown.” He added that “Syria is a part of the resistance against Israel and the US. Syria is not the target.”

Abadi excluded the possibility of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) being behind the bombing, adding that the explosion was the work of the intelligence agencies of major powers. According to him, the FSA is just a tool; they don’t have the strength, influence or power for such an operation. He clarified that “the blast was orchestrated by external actors and Israel is the primary beneficiary.”

While the Iranian ambassador asserted that what happened at the National Security headquarters was a turning point in the battle, he stressed that “those who were calling for democracy no longer have a pretext [to justify their support of the opposition]. This is because the targets of the terrorist attack were important figures. It is necessary to wait for the upcoming developments to unfold, as the regime will grow stronger after this strike.”

As for the blame being placed on Iran for the bombing in Bulgaria, which coincided with the blast in Syria, the ambassador emphatically denied these allegations. He said: “We have grown accustomed to such charges since the Islamic Revolution. These accusations are a similar response to what happened recently in Thailand, India and other countries.”

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