(Persia Digest) – To the question on remarks made by Putin’s advisor, Lavrentiev, on Syria about foreign forces leaving this country, the spokesperson of the Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Bahram Ghassemi, answered: “Nobody can force Iran into anything. Iran is an independent country and its policies are based on its own global interests.”

He added: “Iran is in Syria on the invitation of its government to fight terrorism and defend its territorial integrity. For as long as the threat of terrorism exists and the Syrian government wants Iran to stay and help, we will be there."

He continued: “Those who must leave are those who are there without the consent of the Syrian government.”

As reported by Persia Digest, in a meeting with Syrian President Bashar Al Asad on Thursday 17 May 2018, Vladimir Putin said at the stage of establishing peace in Syria, foreign troops should leave this country.

A day later, Alexander Lavrentiev told a press conference that: “Mr Putin’s remarks were about all military units in Syria, including the US, Turkey, Hezbollah (Lebanon), and Iran.”

After the release of the news, Al Mayadeen said some Syrian officials close to the President had said that Putin's statements did not include Iranian and Russian forces. The sources emphasized on the inaccuracy of statements attributed to Vladimir Putin, saying: “Iranian and Russian forces are in Syria on the invitation of its President and will leave only if asked by Damascus.”

Persia Digest reports that the remarks made by the Iranian spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, nevertheless, indicate that the alleged remarks of Putin and Lavrentiev cannot be entirely incorrect.

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