MESOP Iran Daily: “Syria Ceasefire Just An Excuse to Change Assad Regime”

March 02 – by Scott Lucas – eaworldview – The top foreign advisor to Iran’s Supreme Leader has denounced the ceasefire in Syria’s five-year conflict. Ali Akbar Velayati, a former Foreign Secretary, said on Tuesday that the “Americans are pursuing regime change in Syria, and the Syrian ceasefire is just an excuse to change the Assad regime”.

He continued: The Americans failed to remove Bashar Assad through the war waged by their proxies. They have now taken the issue to the UN Security Council and decided that Assad must not remain in power and a hand-picked American regime should be installed. The Islamic Republic of Iran is absolutely opposed to the Americans’ plan. Velayati repeated the regime’s line, “Any decision on Syria’s future is only possible with the will of the Syrian people, not with the decisions of the UN or other governments.”A cessation of hostilities, brokered by the US and Russia, began on Saturday. Violence has decreased across Syria, although the Syrian military has continued to pursue attacks in some areas.

See Syria Daily, March 2: Despite “Ceasefire”, Assad Regime Presses Ground Attacks

Iran has provided essential political, economic, and military assistance to the Assad regime since 2012. Working with Russia, the Iranian military put in more commanders and troops from October 2015 to help pursue multi-front offensives against Syria’s rebels.

Velayati has insisted on several occasions that, despite talks for a political resolution, President Assad must continue to hold power.

See See Iran Daily, Nov 20: Supreme Leader’s Aide — “Assad Stronger Than Ever”