“We are very concerned about reports of the use of chemical weapons in Syria, and we strongly condemn the use of such weapons,” Foreign Ministry Spokesman Abbas Araqchi said on Saturday.
Referring to an alleged deadly chemical weapons attack in the Syrian capital Damascus on Wednesday, Araqchi said, “There are documents [showing] terrorist groups are behind this attack,”
He also said the incident was a setup to implicate the Syrian government at a time when UN inspectors are visiting the country to investigate the alleged prior use of chemical weapons.
The Iranian official also warned against any foreign military intervention in Syria, saying there is no international mandate for intervention in the crisis-hit country.
The comments came after US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel’s remarks on Friday that the Pentagon is moving forces into place in case US President Barack Obama opts for military action against Syria.
“The president has asked the defense department for options. Like always, the Defense Department is prepared and has been prepared to provide all options for all contingencies to the president of the United States,” Hagel said.
Reaffirming Iran’s stance that the Syrian crisis does not have a military solution, Araqchi criticized Hagel’s remarks, saying “such provocative statements and measures only further complicate the situation in the region.”
Syria has been gripped by deadly unrest since 2011. A very large number of the militants operating inside Syria are foreign nationals.
According to reports, the West and its regional allies – especially Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey – are supporting the militants inside Syria.