Ahmadinejad, Assad, Nasrallah discuss regional issues

February 27, 2010

TEHRAN - Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, and Hezbollah Secretary General Hassan Nasrallah held a meeting in Damascus on Thursday to discuss regional issues.

The Iranian president also held separate meetings with the Syrian president and the Hezbollah leader in the Syrian capital on Thursday.
During the meeting between Ahmadinejad and Assad, the two presidents said the two nations should strengthen their ties.
Ahmadinejad visited Syria one day after U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton asked Syria to downgrade its ties with Iran.
Speaking in the U.S. Senate on Wednesday, Clinton announced that Washington had asked Syria to “begin to move away from the relationship with Iran, which is so deeply troubling to the region as well as to the United States.”
During their meeting, the Iranian and Syrian presidents delivered harsh responses to Clinton’s comments.
The United States seeks “to dominate the region, but they sense Iran and Syria are preventing” them from realizing their goal, Ahmadinejad said.
The Iranian president also criticized the Unites States’ regional policy, saying, “Instead of interfering in the region’s affairs, pack your things and leave.”
Assad expressed strong support for the Islamic Republic of Iran, saying the U.S. stance toward Iran is another instance of colonialism in the region.
“I find it strange that they (Americans) talk about Middle East stability and peace and other beautiful principles and call for two countries to move away from each other,” Assad said when asked about Ms. Clinton’s remarks.
“We hope that others don’t give us lessons about our region and our history,” he added.
Ahmadinejad stated that the Iran-Syria alliance is unbreakable.
“Clinton said we should maintain a distance. I say there is no distance between Iran and Syria,” he noted.
Commenting on Israel’s threats, Assad said regional countries should always be prepared to respond to an Israeli attack.
Ahmadinejad said regional countries should try to create a future “without Zionism and without colonialists.”
In his talks with Hezbollah Secretary General Hassan Nasrallah, the Iranian president said the Zionist regime is afraid of the resistance and the Lebanese people.
And Israel’s latest threats show the weakness of this illegitimate regime, he stated.
Ahmadinejad said Iran supports Lebanon, adding, “The Iranian nation will always stand on the side of the resistance” and if the Zionist regime repeats its previous mistakes, regional countries will respond very harshly.
He also stressed the need to be prepared for an Israeli attack.
Nasrallah said Israel’s threats are empty and the Islamic resistance movement Hezbollah is not afraid of its threats.
“The Zionist regime is not in a position to start a new war. It is only trying to start a psychological war to create fear in the region,” the Hezbollah leader stated.