DUBAI – A senior aide to Iran’s supreme leader warned against the overthrow of Syria’s President Bashar Assad, saying his fate was a “red line”, in one of the Islamic state’s strongest messages of support for the Damascus government.
“If the Syrian President Bashar Assad is toppled, the line of resistance in the face of Israel will be broken,” Ali Akbar Velayati, who is seen as a potential contender in Iran’s June presidential election, said in an interview broadcast on Sunday.
Asked if Iran sees Assad as a red line, Velayati said: “Yes, it is so. But this does not mean that we ignore the Syrian people’s right in choose its own rulers.”
More than 60,000 people have died in the uprising against Assad, part of the Arab Spring protests that have swept aside four heads of state since 2011.
Full article: Khamenei aide: Toppling Assad ‘red line’ for Iran (Jerusalem Post)