Deputy Minister Ayoub Kara (Likud) on Thursday criticized UN special envoy Kofi Annan saying his understanding of the Syria crisis is "naive."
"Annan's efforts to bring about a ceasefire will not succeed because he does not possess an in-depth understanding of the complexity of the situation in Syria," Kara told Army Radio during an interview.
Kara, a Druze lawmaker with numerous opposition contacts in Syria, said "Annan's position is naive, as are the policies of the United States and Europe."
"Unfortunately things in Syria have not changed and probably will not change," Kara said, explaining, "The Assad regime is mired in lies and deceit, is massacring defenseless people, and is under the thumb of that of the Ayatollah in Iran," Kara said.
The remark appeared to be a veiled reference to what Kara perceives as the futility of Annan seeking Tehran's aid in bringing an end to violence in Syria.
The Assad regime's close ties to Shi'ite Persian Iran and the Shi'ite terror group Hizbullah in Lebanon, as well as the diplomatic cover provided by Russia and China, has allowed him to hold fast to power during the now 13-month popular uprising against his rule.
The Syrian president's entrenched position and brutal crackdown – which has now claimed at least 9,100 civilian lives – has made Syria a major epicenter of violence in the Arab Spring.
Kara also expressed skepticism about whether the tense ceasefire in Syria that began at dawn on Thursday would hold.