Russian President: Moderate Terrorists Washington Play on Words

Fri Oct 23, 2015 10:57:24

The Russian president Vladimir Putin has lashed out at the White House for making a distinction between “moderate” and “non-moderate” terrorists in choosing its targets in Syria.

“There is no need to play with words and divide terrorists into moderate and non-moderate ones. I would like to know what the difference is,” he said from the Russian resort city of Sochi on Thursday.

He also criticized the White House for staging “a double game” in Syria by “announcing the fight against terrorists” on the one hand and using some others “to position pawns.”

The Russian head of state was respectively referring to the September 2014-present US-led air campaign in Syria, which purports to be pounding the Takfiri terrorist group of Daesh, and Washington’s recruitment and equipment of militants fighting the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

He also suggested that the US had undertaken the airstrikes “without considering the legitimacy of the use of force and its consequences,” referring to Washington’s refusal to obtain any authorization from Damascus or the United Nations for the attacks. Putin hinted that the mission was one not “solving but only multiplying problems.”

Syria has been grappling with a deadly crisis since 2011, which has claimed the lives of more than 250,000 people so far.

Upon a request from Damascus, Russia has been conducting airstrikes of its own against Daesh and other terrorist groups in Syria since September 30. The Syrian army’s fight against terrorists took a new turn after Russia started launching airstrikes against the Takfiri terrorists.

Putin further asserted that a military victory over the militants would not solve all the problems facing Syria, saying he was convinced that the Russian Armed Forces' operation in Syria would help authorities in Damascus to create conditions for a political settlement.

‘US Cheated World on Iran’

Elsewhere, the Russian president lamented that the US was continuing to develop a missile system in Europe under the pretext of facing a threat from Iran although “the Iranian nuclear problem is solved.”

The Russian president was referring to the July conclusion in the Austrian capital Vienna of a nuclear agreement between Iran and the P5+1 group of world powers – the United States, Britain, France, China and Russia plus Germany.

“There was and is no threat from Iran, as we were saying. The reason that spurred our US partners to build a missile defense system is gone,” he said. "We, and the whole world, were being misled once again, or put more simply, cheated," Putin said.

The main US goal, Putin said, was “to break the strategic balance, change the configuration of forces in its favor so as to not just dominate but be able to dictate its own will to all and its geopolitical competitors and its allies.”


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