Sunday, 17 December, 2017

Russian Federation reportedly accuses USA of pretending to fight ISIS in Syria, Iraq

FILE 2016 Spokesman for the Russian Defence Ministry Major General Igor Konashenkov speaks during a news conference Russia reportedly accuses US of pretending to fight ISIS in Syria, Iraq
Sammy Stanley | 12 October, 2017, 11:41

The accusations appear to reflect Russia-US tensions as US-backed Syrian forces and the Russian-backed Syrian army race for control of oil and gas-rich areas of eastern Syria.

The Russian Defense Ministry said the usa -led coalition has reduced its air strikes in the region when Syrian forces started to make gains in Deir al-Zor Province in Syria.

The respite in bombing had allowed militants to cross the border and reinforce Isis' front line against the advance of the Syrian army, Moscow said.

The groups of terrorists are moving in the direction of Al Bukamal, a city located in southeastern Syria on the border with Iraq.

Moscow's defence ministry spokesman, Major General Igor Konashenkov, said on Wednesday that about 600 militants have moved from the area around Tanf near the Jordanian border in Syria's southeast, where U.S. military advisers are based.

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"The actions of the Pentagon and the coalition demand an explanation. Is their change of tack a desire to complicate as much as they can the Syrian army's operation, backed by the Russian air force, to take back Syrian territory to the east of the Euphrates?", asked Konashenkov.

Russian Defense Ministry asked for a clarification from Washington about the latter's attempts to turn the areas of the United States forces' presence in al-Tanf into springboards for ISIL terrorists to launch attacks on a number of sites in Syria's al-Badia.

The Pentagon did not immediately respond to The Independent's request for comment. Over the past month, Moscow has repeatedly accused the United States of hindering the Russian-backed Syrian army offensive in the east of the country.

"The question how about 300 ISIL militants using pick-up trucks who tried to block the strategically important Damascus-Deir Ezzor highway, through which supplies for Syrian troops are brought and humanitarian aid for the population is delivered, penetrated into the US-controlled area in al-Tanf remains unanswered", the general said. A coalition spokesperson dismissed the allegations as false.

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