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BEIRUT, August 25. /ITAR-TASS/. Any “military action in the Syrian territory not approved by the Syrian government will be regarded as an aggression,” Syrian Acting Foreign Minister Walid Muallem said on Monday.
At a news conference in Damascus, he warned the United States against striking at the Islamic State (IS) bases in Syria. According to him, “Resolution 2170 of the UN Security Council gives no such right to any state.”
Muallem said his country was ready to cooperate with international and regional efforts to fight Islamic State, but insisted intelligence must be shared with Syria. The United States has suggested it is considering targeting IS fighters based in Syria.
US President Barack Obama on August 8 authorized “targeted airstrikes” in Iraq at the Islamic State positions to protect American personnel and help Iraqi and Kurdish forces. Obama also authorized the provision of humanitarian aid “to help save Iraqi civilians stranded on the mountain” without food and water. Since then, the US Central Command has already launched 96 strikes at the Islamic State positions.
Muallem also said Syria had not requested Russia’s military aid for fighting against the Islamic State militants.
“Our cooperation with Russia has not reached a phase in which we would request direct military support,” he said. “We would like Russia to take the lead in coordination of the international community’s efforts in the fulfilment of Resolution 2170 of the UN Security Council. I told Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov about it in a telephone conversation today,” Muallem said.
The resolution, adopted by the UN Security Council on August 15, lays the foundation for the joint international response to the threat from the terrorist organizations Islamic State and Jabhat al-Nusra that emerged in Iraq and Syria.
The Russian Foreign Ministry said Lavrov and Muallem had a detailed discussion of the situation in Syria in the context of growing terrorist activity in Syria and Iraq, strengthening of the positions of terrorist and extremist bandit groups in these countries, especially the Islamic State militants. The ministers confirmed “solidarity of Russia and Syria in the need of uncompromising fight against extremism in all its manifestations". The conversation was held at the initiative of the Syrian side, the Russian Foreign Ministry said.