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Terrorist groups spreading insecurity in northern Syria under US, Turkey support: Damascus

Syrian Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad speaks in an exclusive interview with the state-run al-Ikhbariyah Syria television news network broadcast, on December 27, 2021.

Syrian Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad has lauded the Syrian military’s notable achievements in the fight against Takfiri terrorist groups, saying that foreign-backed terrorists are wreaking havoc in the northern part of Syria under the protection of the United States and Turkey.

Speaking in an exclusive interview with the state-run al-Ikhbariyah Syria television news network broadcast on Monday evening, Mekdad said Hay'at Tahrir al-Sham and the Daesh terrorist groups are still active in the northwestern and northeastern parts of Syria while receiving support from Washington and Ankara.

“It is in the ruling Turkish government’s best interests to infuse destruction and instability across Syria,” he said, adding that reconciliation agreements signed under Russia’s auspices between the Syrian government and opposition forces paved the way for the repatriation of the displaced civilians.

The top Syrian diplomat emphasized that Ankara is getting in the way of Syria talks in the Astana format. “Turkey must realize it has no future whatsoever in our homeland,” he said.

Mekdad noted that Damascus is positively cooperating with the Syrian Constitutional Committee, a 150-member body that comprises representatives of the Syrian government, moderate opposition, and civil society.

“The Syrian government has no problems with either the United Nations or with UN special envoy for Syria Geir Pedersen. It is rather implacably opposed to those parties which have dispatched tens of thousands of terrorists and spent millions of dollars in order to destroy Syria,” he stressed.

“After the enemies of Syria failed to attain their objectives through terrorism and massacre of ordinary people, they attempted to put obstacles in the way of a political settlement because they do not favor stability in the country,” the top Syrian diplomat said.

Mekdad went on to say that Turkish military forces have occupied parts of Syria, but Syrian army troops will eventually liberate them, whether those areas are located in the northwestern province of Idlib or near the border with Turkey.

He said Kurdish-led militants from the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have no control over their areas and are indeed being supported by US occupation troops.

“They (SDF militants) should not count on the United States as the latter will exploit them. No separatist scheme can be implemented in Syria ... We call on those who looted Syrian resources to pay compensation,” Mekdad said.

“The US has destroyed [Syria’s northern province of] Raqqa under the pretext of fighting Daesh terrorists, and has perpetrated crimes there and in the neighboring province of Dayr al-Zawr,” the Syrian foreign minister said.

Elsewhere in his remarks, Mekdad lambasted the US and European sanctions against Syria as illegal, saying the coercive economic measures are meant to advance the agendas of Washington and its allies.

Since 2011, Syria has been gripped by foreign-backed militancy, as a result of which Daesh and other terrorist groups emerged in the Arab country.

The Syrian government has repeatedly condemned the US and the EU for waging economic terrorism on the Arab country through their unilateral sanctions, holding them responsible for the suffering of the Syrian people, especially now that the country is grappling with a deadly coronavirus outbreak.

Damascus has also been critical of the United Nations for staying silent on the destructive role of the US and EU, among other parties, which support terrorism in Syria.

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