William Hague
Photo: Reuters

UK: Iran is helping Syria crush protesters

British foreign secretary says Islamic Republic providing Syria with equipment, advice on suppressing anti-gov't protests

British Foreign Secretary William Hague said Sunday that Syria was "undoubtedly being assisted by the Iranian government" by supplying "equipment" and advising on how to crush protests.


Iran's role was "an extraordinary example of hypocrisy in world affairs," Hague said.



Hague called on the United Nations Security Council to make a "clear statement" to the Syrian government with a resolution condemning its crackdown of anti-regime protesters.


As Syrian forces clashed with protesters in a flashpoint town and international outrage at the brutal action against demonstrators mounted, Hague said the prospects of passing a resolution were "on a knife-edge".


Syria has strong links to Russia, and the inter-connections between the Syrian government and Lebanon – the current Arab representative on the Security Council – had made it "impossible for the Lebanese government to take a clear position on this", Hague added.


Hague also said it was "high time" that Syrian President Bashar Assad spoke to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.


UN officials say Assad has been refusing to take telephone calls from Ban in recent days. Ban has become an outspoken critic of the Syrian leader since protests erupted in March in which at least 1,100 people have been killed.


Syrian state television said Sunday that troops had fought violent battles with "armed gangs" in the northern town of Jisr Al-Shughur, where 120 security personnel were killed this month.

The government advance sent thousands of people fleeing across the border into Turkey.



פרסום ראשון: 06.13.11, 11:38