Iran’s top military commander says both Tehran and Damascus will comply with a month-long Syria ceasefire declared by the UN Security Council, but that attacks will continue in the Damascus suburbs held by terrorists.
The UN Security Council unanimously passed a resolution on Saturday, demanding a 30-day ceasefire across Syria to allow for humanitarian aid deliveries and medical evacuations.
Amendments were made to exclude Daesh, al-Qaeda and al-Nusra Front along with “individuals, groups, undertakings and entities” associated with the terrorist groups from the ceasefire.
Iran’s Chief of Staff Major General Mohammad Baqeri said Sunday the architects of the ceasefire had it passed at the UN in order to forestall the Syrian army’s eradication of terrorists in the Damascus suburbs.
“This time again, like in the past, those who do not want security and peace in Syria took up the banner of ceasefire in order to support terrorists after they saw the Syrian army and government were cleansing the Damascus suburbs,” he said.
Nevertheless, “we will adhere to the ceasefire resolution; Syria will also adhere. Parts of the suburbs of Damascus, which are held by the terrorists, are not covered by the ceasefire and clean-up (operations) will continue there,” he added.
The Syrian army is trying to drive out terrorists from Eastern Ghouta which has become a festering ground for foreign-backed terrorist groups to launch mortar attacks on the Syrian capital.
Baqeri said, “The Syrian army seeks to clear the land of terrorists in order to provide security for the people in Damascus, but so far 1,200 mortar shells have been fired at the city, disrupting people’s security and peace.”
As for the UN Security Council resolution on Sunday, he said, “The West and supporters of the terrorists insisted that this ceasefire be put in place.”
“With the joint work which was done by Syria and its friends as well as the opponents of terrorists and those fighting them, including Iran and Russia, the resolution was moderated a bit in order to continue the fight on known terrorists such as Nusra Front,” Baqeri said.
The UN resolution also allows the Syrian government to continue operations against terrorists in Idlib Province, the country’s largest remaining militant stronghold.
Baqeri said, “Certain areas were specified to allow the ordinary people to continue their lives but this does not mean the terrorist front will remain there and in the next few months, the entire Syrian territory will be cleaned up.”
Iran has been providing military advisory support for the Syrian government forces in their counter-terrorism campaign at the request of Damascus.