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Iranian FM calls for negotiation on Syrian crisis

The ardent supporter of Bashar Al Assad's regime, Iran, called for negotiation regarding the Syrian crisis and questioned the legality of a unilateral attack on Syria in the absence of a UN mandate. Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif reiterated Tehran's position against chemical attacks on civilians on his Facebook page. "Any use of chemical weapons must be condemned, regardless of its victims or culprits," he expressed. The minister claimed 'extremist groups' "likely" used chemical weapons against civilians.  The US and its allies including France and Turkey directly blamed the Syrian regime for the more than 1,000 deaths resulting from the August 21 chemical attack on a Damascus suburb. Washington has sent its war ships to the Mediterranean Sea for a punitive airstrike against the Syrian regime, asking for authorization from both houses of Congress. While France sent one ship, Turkey expressed its willingness to participate in any coalition against Damascus.

Iranian FM Zarif called "every actor with influence in Syria" to gather around the negotiating table to end the three-year old crisis, asking "But is a threat to use force the solution? Or does it represent the paradigm and the mentality that have helped to create this humanitarian tragedy and political catastrophe?" He also questioned the legal status of using force without the UN's mandate. 

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