0849 GMT December 14, 2019
IRAN DAILY: Iran refused to attend an anti-ISIL conference organized by the US and its allies in Paris earlier this week as it was suspicious about the objectives of the US-led coalition against the terrorist group. Will Iran act independently to confront ISIL?
JAHANGIRZADEH: The Islamic Republic of Iran is the standard-bearer in the fight against terrorism and will continue to support the governments of Iraq and Syria in order to destroy the terrorists but will never take military action against ISIL independently.
Iran has already announced that it's ready to cooperate in reducing the threats posed by terrorists to the region. What kind of cooperation will it offer?
Iran has said it will assist Iraq and Syria by sending military advisors to the two countries, training their forces and, supplying them with military equipment. The Islamic Republic will definitely cooperate with regional countries to accomplish these aims but not as part of an international coalition.
Do you mean that cooperation with regional countries is enough to take out ISIL and there's no need for an international coalition?
Exactly, since the bulk of the ISIL forces is not so huge to create a large international alliance to eradicate the terrorist group, it seems that the goal of building such an international coalition is to invade Syria under the pretext of fighting ISIL and ultimately undermining and toppling the government of President Bashar al-Assad.
How strong is the US-led coalition and how would the Iraqi and Syrian nations react to attacks by the military alliance?
Regional countries pursue different and contradictory goals in destroying the ISIL. Contradictory goals are also quite evident among members of the Paris coalition. That's the main reason for making the coalition ineffective. The Iraqi and Syrian nations will not allow the alliance to undermine their countries' independence under the pretext of eliminating ISIL.
US Secretary of State John Kerry has said military action against Takfiris in Iraq and Syria could last three years. Don't you think the time frame suggested by Kerry is rather prolonged?
Democrats' tenure will end in less than three years and they intend to make a historic achievement. The best accomplishment will be the removal of Assad's government and the annihilation of the resistance movement in the region. Fighting ISIL is Democrats' cover-up for a bigger goal.
Will Iran and the international coalition finally work together against ISIL?
Many Western politicians regard Iran as a major power in the Middle East which should not be ignored. They acknowledge that without Iran's participation, the anti-ISIL coalition will collapse and security will not be restored to Iraq and Syria.