BAGHDAD: Iraq's prime minister Saturday condemned the killing of more than 150 people in a central Syrian town two days ago, describing the deaths as an "ugly massacre."
"The ugly massacre that took place in Treimsa town, in Hama province, provokes feelings of concern and condemnation," Nuri al-Maliki said in a statement published on his official website.
"This reprehensible crime, which we condemn strongly ... should be an additional incentive for everyone to abandon the methods of violence, murder, revenge and terrorism in solving problems," Maliki said.
He said the killings should urge people to accelerate finding a peaceful solution to the 16-month-long Syrian crisis.
The killings on Thursday have sparked an international outcry, and added urgency to deadlocked Security Council negotiations on a Syria resolution.
Iraq, which has a 600-kilometre (375-mile) border with Syria, has voiced support for a peaceful solution to the Syrian crisis which initially began in February 2011.