Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov has denounced the illegal US military presence in Syria, warning that Washington is actually seeking to disintegrate the Arab country.
In an interview with RT Arabic on Tuesday, Ryabkov stressed that Moscow is opposed to the American “scenario of a de facto partition of Syria.”
"One of the main reasons for the instability and continuation of the conflict in Syria is the illegal presence of the United States in the country," he said.
"I think that in their arsenal there is a scenario of a de facto partition of Syria. We are against this and are acting in accordance with the existing resolutions of the UN Security Council, which has confirmed the territorial integrity of Syria.”
Russia has been helping Syrian forces in the ongoing battles across the conflict-plagued state, mainly providing aerial support to ground operations against foreign-backed terrorists.
Iran has also been offering advisory military assistance to the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad at its official request.
However, the US has deployed forces and military equipment in Syria without any authorization from Damascus or a UN mandate.
Washington has long been collaborating with anti-Damascus terrorists and stealing Syria’s crude resources, ignoring repeated calls by Damascus to end its occupation of the country.
Currently, about 900 American troops remain stationed in an expanse of northeastern Syria that is controlled by Kurdish militants.
Ryabkov's remarks came one day after Russian President Vladimir Putin received Assad for the first time since 2018 and criticized illegal foreign forces operating in Syria - a rebuke of the United States and Turkey.
"The main problem, in my view, is that foreign armed forces remain in certain regions of the country without the approval of the United Nations and without your permission," a Kremlin statement quoted Putin as saying during the meeting.
It “clearly runs counter to international law" and "undermines your ability to use your best efforts to consolidate the country and promote recovery at a pace that would have been possible if the legitimate government controlled the entire country,” he added.