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ARAB-IRANIAN RELATIONS - June 14 - Restraint In Syria Urged.

FM Kharrazi urges restraint in Syria, saying the situation could become dangerous if anyone rocked the boat. (Syria, Iran's closest Arab ally, faces daunting challenges after the sudden death of Pres. Hafez Al Assad and the withdrawal of Israeli forces from S. Lebanon.) Kharrazi tells reporters at a news conference in Berne: "I am sure you will agree with me that it is a volatile region and a very sensitive one, and any provocation can lead to a dangerous situation in Syria". He says he has held talks with Assad's son and heir-apparent Bashar, who he says enjoyed the support of various parties within Syria. Analysts question whether Bashar, an eye doctor, could take his father's place. While parliament has changed the Syrian constitution to allow Bashar to rule, Hafez Al Assad's exiled brother Rifaat has denounced the nomination of Bashar as Syria's next leader and vowed to mount a challenge himself.
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Publication:APS Diplomat Recorder
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:7SYRI
Date:Jun 17, 2000
Words:152
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