NEW DELHI: Iran’s admission that it accidentally shot down the Ukranian airliner raises various domestic issues for Tehran. It will also occasion some cheer in Washington. But Dr Waiel Awwad, senior Syrian journalist and West Asia expert based in New Delhi, believes that Iran with its array of proxy forces retains a very strong hand in the region, and the last word is yet to be said on the killing of Quds Force Commander Qassem Soleimani. In a conversation with Surya Gangadharan, Editor of StratNews Global and Opinion Editor Ashwin Ahmad, Dr Awwad acknowledges the proactive roles played by Russia and China but wonders why India, with its huge stakes in the region, prefers to make only anodyne statements. India’s soft power, he believes, is widespread in the region, it has credibility, its motives will not be misunderstood and the time for action is now.