Sat, October 13, 2012
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Iranian lawmakers ask Turkey not to follow West's path on Syria

2012-10-12 20:41:22 GMT2012-10-13 04:41:22(Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

TEHRAN, Oct. 12 (Xinhua) -- As the tensions between Syria and Turkey escalated, Iranian lawmakers and a senior cleric on Friday called on Turks to refrain from what they called following the Western path of antagonism with Syria.

Turkey is still putting pressure on Syria by authorizing the government to launch cross-border military operations and reinforcing military buildup in border region between the two countries.

Turkish Chief of General Staff Gen. Necdet Ozel on Wednesday vowed to give a harsher response if shelling from Syria spills over the border after last week's deadly incident which left five Turks dead in a Turkish border town.

On Friday, a senior Iranian lawmaker said the United States is seeking to use neighboring states against crisis-stricken Syria, Press TV reported.

The United States sees military intervention as the only solution to the Syrian crisis and wants Turkey to be involved in the American war game, said Hossein Naqavi-Hosseini, spokesman of Iran Majlis (parliament) National Security and Foreign Policy Commission.

"With such plots, the Americans seek to create conflict among regional states," Naqavi-Hosseini was quoted as saying.

"Our enemies outside of the region are beating war drums and therefore Turkey must be careful not to become involved in such a conflict," said the Iranian lawmaker.

Also on Friday, another Iranian lawmaker said military conflict between Syria and Turkey will drag the two countries into a war that will only benefit the West.

Hossein Sobhaninia, a member of Iran's Majlis National Security and Foreign Policy Commission, said Western countries have failed in their efforts to change the Syrian government and now seek to intensify regional problems and preoccupy Syria with external problems "to prepare the grounds for bombings and massacres and create insecurity," according to Press TV.

"Such conflicts are definitely not what (the Turkish) people want and will inflict damages on both sides," Sobhaninia was quoted as saying.

Also, Tehran's interim Friday prayer leader, Hojjatoleslam Kazem Seddiqi, said Friday that Turkey is following the West to weaken Syria.

Pointing to the border tensions between Turkey and Syria, Seddiqi said, "Such moves show that Turkey is following a Western and NATO plan to weaken or destroy an anti-Zionist and anti- American Muslim country which is a thorn in the side of the U.S. and the Zionist (Israeli) regime," according to Press TV.

"Instead of helping insurgents, it (Turkey) should be trying to convince them (insurgents) so that the initiated reforms (in Syria) can be reinforced and national solidarity is created," Seddiqi was quoted as saying.

Turkey must prevent its leaders from starting fratricide in their Muslim neighbor, he said.

To retaliate upon the U.S. pressures on Iran's neighbors to ground and inspect Iranian planes to Syria, Iranian lawmaker Nader Qazipour called the Iranian government Friday to intercept and inspect all U.S. airplanes passing through the Islamic republic's airspace.

Qazipour was quoted by Press TV as saying that the Islamic republic must respond to the U.S. pressures on Iran's neighbors.

According to the report, Iraq stopped and inspected a Damascus- bound IranAir cargo plane on Oct. 2 under the U.S. pressures, but allowed it to continue its route as no prohibited items were found on board.

"American planes fly from Afghanistan to Iraq and from Iraq to Afghanistan across Iran's air border and we expect the (Iranian) government to respond in kind to them (Americans)," Qazipour was quoted as saying.

U.S. officials have claimed that Tehran uses Iraqi airspace to send weapons to the Syrian government, but Iran has dismissed the claims as "false."

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