Bloomberg News

Lavrov Didn’t Accuse U.S. of Arming Syrian Rebels, Audio Shows

June 13, 2012

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov didn’t accuse the U.S. of arming Syrian rebels, as an Iranian translation of remarks he made at a media briefing had indicated, according to an audio recording of the event.

The Russian-to-Farsi translation of his remarks made in Tehran yesterday, reported by Iranian state news agencies and television, had Lavrov accusing the U.S. of helping to arm Syrian insurgents.

The Russian foreign minister, who was giving a joint press conference with his Iranian counterpart Ali Akbar Salehi, was asked by a Russian reporter to comment on U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s accusations that Russia is fueling the Syrian conflict by delivering attack helicopters to Syria.

“We aren’t shipping to Syria or anywhere else things that can be used against peaceful demonstrators,” Lavrov said, according to a recording of his remarks in Russian provided by the Foreign Ministry. “Unlike the United States, for example, which regularly delivers such special equipment to the region, including a recent delivery to one of the countries of the Persian Gulf.”

The translation of his remarks by Iran’s state-run Mehr news agency had Lavrov saying: “Unlike the U.S., which supplies arms to the Syrian opposition that can be used against the Syrian government, we don’t take such action.”

To contact the reporter on this story: Henry Meyer in Moscow at hmeyer4@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Balazs Penz at bpenz@bloomberg.net


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