Russian foreign minister says Iran's call to wipe Israel off the map is "not acceptable"

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on Thursday described Iran's call to wipe Israel off the map as unaccceptable.

Lavrov said after meeting with Jordanian Foreign Minister Farouk Kasrawi that the comments made by Iran's new president were "something we cannot accept."

He said Iran's ambassador to Moscow had been called into the foreign ministry because "we wanted to clarify the meaning of the statement."

At a student gathering in Tehran Wednesday, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad called for Israel to be wiped off the map. The comments drew widespread condemnation.

Lavrov arrived here Thursday on the last leg of a Middle East tour which had taken him to the Palestinian territories and Israel.

He also told reporters that Russia would not accept the imposition of sanctions on Syria after a U.N. report which implicated the country in the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.

Russia is one of the five permanent members of the Security Council, with veto power over all resolutions, AP reported. V.A.