DUBAI, Aug 5 (Reuters) - Iran warned against foreign
intervention in Syria on Sunday and said the conflict there
could engulf Israel, Iranian media said.
Larijani accused the United States and regional countries he
did not name of providing military support to rebels fighting to
topple President Bashar al-Assad, a key Arab ally of Iran.
Syria has accused Turkey, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia of backing
rebels in Syria and fuelling violence there. Iran meanwhile has
supported Assad's efforts to crush the 17-month revolt.
"The fire that has been ignited in Syria will take the
fearful (Israelis) with it," Iran Parliament Speaker Ali
Larijani said on Sunday, according to the Islamic Republic News
"What really allows these countries to interfere in internal
Syrian affairs?" Larijani was quoted as saying.
Larijani is considered a moderate conservative and a close
follower of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the most
powerful man in Iran who decides the country's foreign policy.
Larijani is also a fierce critic of President Mahmoud
Ahmadinejad and widely expected to run for president in 2013.
On Friday, following his visit to Moscow to discuss Syria,
Iran's Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian said
"terrorist groups" supported by foreign forces were operating in
Damascus and Aleppo, IRNA reported.
Amir-Abdollahian said "tens of thousands of weapons" had
entered Syria from neighbouring countries and were being used by
groups including al Qaeda.
"Unfortunately America and regional countries ... do not
take steps to control the borders," Amir-Abdollahian was quoted
Amir-Abdollahian said he did not believe Syria would be
attacked by foreign powers, but that if it were, it would not
need Iran's help in defending itself.
"Syria has been ready for years to respond to any military
attack against it by (Israel) or other countries, and can
respond strongly to any military action by itself and with
complete readiness," Amir-Abdollahian was quoted as saying.
Iran and Russia support the six-point plan presented by
former UN peace envoy Kofi Annan to solve the crisis. A
frustrated Annan resigned his post last week, blaming
"finger-pointing and name-calling" at the U.N. Security Council
for his decision to quit.
Iran has blamed the United States and countries in the
region for the failure of Annan's plan.
(Reporting by Yeganeh Torbati; Editing by Jon Hemming)