Illegal foreign presence in Syria serves to revive terrorism front: Iranian official
Iran’s top security official says the illegitimate military presence of certain countries in Syria is meant to put the Takfiri terrorists, who have suffered defeat in the region, back on their feet.
Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani made the remarks on Tuesday during a meeting with his Russian counterpart, Nikolay Patrushev, in Sochi, where he is to attend a security conference of senior officials from more than 100 countries.
“Through their illegitimate military presence in Syria, some countries have only further complicated the circumstances on the ground there, and are practically taking steps towards the reinforcement of the defeated front of Takfiri terrorism,” he said.
The two officials discussed a wide range of issues, including bilateral anti-terror cooperation, insecurity in Afghanistan, and the threat facing the region from the relocation of terrorists to the Central Asian country following their defeat in Syria and Iraq.
Shamkhani also spoke in condemnation of an April 9 Israeli strike against the T-4 airbase in central Syria, which killed more than a dozen people, including seven Iranian military advisors.
He said the attack on the people, who are in Syria for anti-terrorism military advisory assistance at the request of the legal government, “exposed the identity of the real supporters of terrorists.”
The official also condemned a recent coordinated attack by the US, the UK, and France against Syria, saying the strikes showed the West is seeking out excuses to damage the standing mechanisms for finding a political solution to the crisis in the Arab country.
The Russian official, for his part, said the conference in Sochi is meant to explore ways to replace militarism and violence with dialog and understanding.
Some countries, he added, resent successful Iran-Russia cooperation, and have launched “full-scale and suspicious” efforts at hurting their ties.
Patrushev said the US is continuously trying to deliver economic and political blows to Iran and Russia to restrict their joint efforts to restore stability to the region, adding, however, that Washington will fail to achieve its goal.
Iran and Russia have been both assisting Syria in its counter-terrorism offensive and mediating, together with Turkey, a diplomatic process to help restore calm to the Arab country.
On the contrary, the United States and its allies have been launching attacks on Syria since 2014, claiming they seek to root out Daesh without getting the Syrian government’s approval or a UN mandate.
The US and its allies have defied the Damascus government’s call to leave Syrian soil despite the collapse of the Takfiri terror group late last year.
In recent months, Russia has on various occasions reported that the US military is allowing Daesh members to leave its former strongholds in the Middle East to Afghanistan, where the terrorists have carried out bloody acts of violence.
Iran has also censured the US for supporting Daesh, with Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei saying in January that Washington has been transferring Daesh to Afghanistan to rationalize its military presence in the region.
Russia backs Iran deal
Elsewhere in his remarks, the Russian official condemned Washington for failing to stay committed to its obligations under the 2015 nuclear deal.
The Russian Federation decisively backs the preservation and implementation of the deal and believes that Iran should be able to enjoy the benefits of the accord, officially called the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).