Syrian rebel groupholds talks with Iran

BEIRUT: Syrian Islamist insurgent group Ahrar al-Sham said today it had been in talks with an Iranian delegation regarding the Syrian city of Zabadani but that the discussions had been halted. 

Any such talks between the conservative Sunni Islamist group and Iran would be highly un-usual. 

Iran backs Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and Lebanese Hezbollah fighters fighting on the ground in Syria’s four-year-old insurgency. 

The statement said Ahrar al-Sham had objected to what it called Iran’s “determination” to empty Zabadani of civilians and fighters. Syrian gov-ernment and Hezbollah forces have been at-tacking rebel-held Zabadini.

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