Iran will not work to keep Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad in power "forever", Iran's deputy foreign minister said during a trip to Britain on Wednesday, according to the AFP news agency.
It was the first visit by an Iranian delegation to Britain since the two countries re-opened their embassies in London and Tehran due to a thaw in relations.
While Iran has "no fighting force, as such" in Syria, Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian claimed Tehran had increased military advisors to help Assad prevail against a range of opposing forces in a civil war that has that has killed 240,000 and displaced millions.
"In any political process the role played by Bashar Al-Assad will be important," Hossein Amir-Abdollahian was quoted as having told the Guardian newspaper.
"We are not working for Assad to stay in power forever as president. But we are very cognizant of his role in the fight against terrorism and the national unity of that country,” he added. (READ MORE)