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China calls on US to 'end theft of Syria’s national resources'

The file photo shows an American armored vehicle passing by a pumpjack in Syria.

China has called on the United States to stop plundering Syria’s national resources and respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Arab country.

“We call on the United States to respect Syria’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, unilaterally lift sanctions, and end the theft of Syria’s national resources,” China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin told a news briefing.

Wang said “this is not the first time that the United States military has stolen oil from Syria and they seem to be becoming more and more uncontrollable.”

The Chinese spokesman also said the US government has a duty to investigate robberies committed by intervening military forces, as well as to compensate for the damages caused.

The Syrian Oil Ministry said recently that the United States and its proxy militant groups pillaged over 80 percent of Syria’s daily crude production in the first half of 2022. According to the ministry’s data, the Syrian oil sector has lost “about 105 billion dollars since the beginning of the conflict until the middle of this year” as a result of the US oil theft campaign.

In August, a leading Chinese newspaper censured the continued plundering of the Syrian oil by the US occupation forces across the Arab country, saying that the looting is a “disgrace and a shame to Washington.”

China Daily made the assertion in an article published on August 13, following reports that a convoy consisting of more than 100 US military tankers had carried thousands of liters of crude oil from the northeastern Syrian province of Hasakah to the semi-autonomous Kurdistan region in northern Iraq.

The US military has stationed forces and equipment in northeastern Syria, with the Pentagon claiming that the deployment is aimed at preventing the oilfields in the area from falling into the hands of Daesh Takfiri terrorists. Damascus, however, maintains the deployment is meant to plunder the country's rich mineral resources.

Former US President Donald Trump admitted on more than one occasion that American forces were in the Arab country for its oil.

In infamous comments made in 2019, Trump said, “We’re keeping [Syria’s] oil. We have the oil. The oil is secure. We left troops behind only for the oil.”

Several countries, including Russia and China, have condemned US actions in plundering the Syrian resources and have called on Washington to stop its continued looting of the war-torn country’s natural resources.

Syrians say the presence of the United States is a form of terrorism.

Local sources in the past have reported US troops moving elements of Daesh around across the border between Syria and Iraq.

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