Iran confirms it will attend Vienna talks on Syria’s future
US invited Islamic republic, a key ally of Syrian president Assad, to try halt civil war
An Iranian foreign ministry spokeswoman said foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif will attend Friday’s talks in Vienna. Photograph: Ebrahim Noroozi/AP
Iran has said it will attend the upcoming international talks over Syria’s future in Vienna. Iranian state TV quoted a foreign ministry spokeswoman as saying foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif will attend the talks. It said Mr Zarif discussed the Syrian crisis with his Russian counterpart on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning.
The semi-offical ISNA news agency also quoted the spokeswoman as saying the Islamic Republic – a key ally of Syrian president Bashar al-Assad – would attend the talks this week. The invitation to the talks came after the United States declared itself ready to engage with Iran if it might help end Syria’s four-year civil war.
Tehran has advocated a diplomatic solution to the conflict in Syria, which has killed more than 250,000 people and displaced millions. But Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has also forbidden negotiations with the United States on any issue other than the nuclear file.
The US state department has confirmed secretary of state John Kerry will attend the Vienna talks on Friday.