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2/16/16

Middle East - Iran warns Riyadh against sending troops to Syria

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Zarif warned Saudi Arabia on Tuesday not to deploy troops in Syria, saying it would violate international law, while also demanding that Riyadh stop bombardments in Yemen.

Zarif, whose country supports the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, was questioned about Saudi Arabia's announcement that it could deploy ground forces as part of the US-led coalition fighting the Islamic State group.

"Those who are operating in Syria without the authority of the sovereign government in Syria are violating international law," he told a news conference at the European Parliament in Brussels.

Speaking later after a meeting with his Belgian counterpart Didier Reynders, Zarif added: "We believe that's dangerous... I believe everybody should put forces together to find a peaceful solution, not to create more danger and more hostility in the region."

Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir said after talks in Washington earlier this month that any operation would be US-led but that Saudi Arabia would play a leading role.

Iran, which has sent thousands of "military advisers" into Syria, also supports the Damascus regime via the Shiite movement Hezbollah and above all Iraqi Shiite militias.

Zarif told the European Parliament that Tehran does not have troops in Syria,

Read more: Flash - Iran warns Riyadh against sending troops to Syria - France 24

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