A senior Iranian parliamentarian says Iran has the ability to help Libyans as they continue to fight the regime of leader Muammar Qaddafi.

“[The situation in Libya] is a matter of concern because Libya is an important country among African and Arab countries, which has extensive oil reserves and colonialists and hegemonistic powers are seeking to plunder the country’s resources and establish dominance over Egypt and Tunisia,” says Hossein Ebrahimi, deputy chairman of the Majlis National Security and Foreign Policy committee.

The Iranian government has spoken of its support of the Arab uprisings that began in Tunisia in December 2010. At the same time, it has violently suppressed protests that have taken place in Iran.

Unlike the rest of the region and the world’s superpowers, Iran is also supporting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad as he continues to battle the popular uprising against him.