The commander of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) says Saudi Arabia lacks the courage to send ground troops to Syria.
"They claim they will send troops [to Syria], but I don’t think they will dare do so,” IRGC commander Mohammad Ali Jafari was quoted as saying on February 6 by the hard-line Fars news agency.
Jafari made the comments in reaction to a statement by Iran’s regional rival Saudi Arabia that it was ready to join ground operations in Syria to fight the extremist group Islamic State (IS) if the U.S.-led military alliance decides to start them.
“This will be like a coup de grâce for them. Apparently, they see no other way but this, and if this is the case, then their fate is sealed," Jafari said.
A number of Iranian fighters are already deployed in Syria, where dozens of them have been killed in recent months. Iranian media say the fighters are “volunteers.”
Tehran claims it has only sent “military advisers” to support its regional ally, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Based on reporting by Fars and Reuters