Iran warns against consequences of attack on Syria
Tehran, Aug 29: Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Wednesday warned of "disastrous" consequences of a possible US attack on Syria, saying that it will be a "catastrophe" for the region, media reported.
The Iranian leader did not elaborate on the impacts of the military intervention on the region but said that the Middle East is like a "powder keg" and its future will be unpredictable if something happens, Xinhua reported citing ISNA news agency.
Khamenei's remarks were an allusion to the possible US military responses to the alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria.
The US has held Damascus responsible for the chemical attack on civilians while the Syrian government has denied any involvement in the incident.
U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel Tuesday said that the US military stands ready to strike Syria at once if President Barack Obama gives the order.
Khamenei emphasized that in case the US intervenes militarily in Syria, they "will definitely be the losers as they suffered the consequences of their intervention in Iraq and Afghanistan."
"The consequences of intervention of non-regional states and foreigners in (the internal affairs of) a country will sparkle a fire and will increase the hatred of the nations toward them," said the Iranian leader at a meeting with the President Hassan Rouhani's cabinet.
Iran is an outspoken ally of the Syrian government in the Middle East and has vowed to support President Bashar al-Assad's administration against the armed rebels which it says are backed by the West.
The Islamic republic has voiced its inclination for "peaceful and political solutions" to the deadly conflicts in the Arab state.
Iran's President Hassan Rouhani Wednesday said that "the world's people, particularly the people in the Middle East, are not prepared for a new war," state-run IRIB TV reported.
"Use of force would be detrimental to the stability...and any adventurism in this region will put the stability of the region and the globe in risk," he said, adding that it will further help extremism and terrorism in the region.
Rouhani said the Islamic republic emphasizes that those responsible for using chemical arms should be identified and brought to justice, official IRNA news agency reported.
He urged the UN inspectors in Syria to clarify different dimensions of the use of chemical weapons in Syria through " unbiased investigations."
Meanwhile, Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesperson Abbas Araqchi Wednesday denied that the Syrian president made a "secret" visit to Tehran Tuesday night, semi-official Mehr news agency reported.
The report by Israeli media regarding the trip of al-Assad to Iran is "funny", Araqchi said.
Some Western media reported earlier Wednesday that the Syrian president made an "unplanned" visit to Iran's capital Tehran Tuesday night after the threats of US and some of its allies against Syria were intensified.