MOSCOW, December 6. /TASS/. Russia’s Defense Ministry is ready to hold talks with US counterparts on assisting them to destroy fighters of the Islamic State terrorist group (banned in Russia) in Iraq’s western regions, Russian First Deputy Defense Minister General of the Army Valery Gerasimov, the chief of the General Staff, said at an annual briefing for foreign military attaches on Wednesday.
"The attention of the international counterterrorism coalition should be focused on how to destroy militants in Iraq’s western regions in order to prevent the ISIL comeback [former name of Islamic State - TASS] to Syria and how to exclude the revival of Islamic Caliphate there, but not on deployment of own military bases in Syria," Gerasimov said.
"We are ready to hold dialogue and join American counterparts in solving this issue," he said.
The US-led coalition has failed to achieve any serious success in the fight against terrorists in Syria, Gerasimov added.
"Contrary to the statements by our Western partners, the operations of the international anti-terror coalition led by the United States have not yielded any considerable successes on the territory of the Syrian Arab Republic," the general said.
"The coalition forces only liberated the city of Raqqa in 2017 and its siege and storming lasted 11 months," he said.
"However, as a result of the coalition’s air strikes, Raqqa was 90% destroyed and became actually unsuitable for living," the chief of Russia’s General Staff said.
Russia’s Defense Ministry said on Tuesday that the coalition’s aircraft had delivered strikes over the past month less than the Russian air task force used to deliver over a day.