Publishe Date: 1:50 PM - 9/17/2012 | Print

Cairo to Host Quadrilateral Ministerial Meeting on Syria

Politics - Top Foreign Ministry Officials from Iran, Turkey, Egypt and Saudi Arabia are due to convene in Cairo Monday night to discuss ways of ending the current crisis in Syria.

The quadrilateral ministerial meeting will come after an initial agreement made in the meeting of senior diplomats from Iran, Egypt, Turkey and Saudi Arabia in Cairo last Tuesday.

Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi his Turkish counterpart Ahmet Davutoglu, Egyptian Foreign Minister Mohamed Kamel Amr and Saudi Deputy Foreign Minister Abdulaziz as well as the new UN-Arab League special envoy on Syria, Lakhdar Brahimi, will attend the meeting of the so-called Contact Group on Syria.

Salehi is due to hold separate bilateral meetings on the sideline of the meeting.

Deputy Foreign Minister for Arab and African Affairs Hossein Amir Abdollahian had represented Iran in the first previous meeting.

Earlier reports said that during the Cairo meeting, Iran proposed that Iraq, as current president of the Arab League (AL) and a key neighboring state of Syria, and Venezuela, a member of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Troika, join the coming meetings of the contact group on Syria.

The initiative for forming the quadrilateral contact group on Syria was put forward by Egypt's first post-revolution President Mohammad Mursi at a recent emergency meeting of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Mecca, Saudi Arabia.

Meantime, Salehi said originally, the Egyptian President had suggested a gathering of four countries, but Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad suggested that two further countries should be included in this group.

The proposal went under further discussions during a recent phone talk between the Iranian and Egyptian foreign ministers and was also a topic of discussions between senior Iranian and Egyptian officials on the sidelines of the 16th heads-of-state summit meeting of the NAM in Tehran late in August.

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