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Putin fears Syria’s breakup could result in upsurge of terrorist threat

MOSCOW, June 04. /ITAR-TASS/. Moscow fears that Syria’s breakup might result in upsurge of the terrorist threat, Russian President Vladimir Putin said in an interview with the French media on Wednesday on the eve of his visit to France’s Normandy for D-Day celebrations.

“We fear that Syria might break up like it happened, for instance, in Sudan,” Putin said. “We are scared to face the situation that might develop there like in Iraq and terrified by the possibility of Syria becoming Afghanistan-like,” he said.

“That is why we want to preserve the legitimate government and later together with the Syrian people and together with our partners in Europe and the United States to mull how to transform that society to make it more modern, more self-sustainable and more humanistic,” he said.

The Russian president voiced the confidence that atrocities were committed by both sides in Syria’s conflict /opposition and the army/, and primarily by extremist organisations booming in Syria.

“Do you know what troubles us?” Putin asked rhetorically. “The organisations linked directly with al-Qaeda which are numerous there. Nobody denies that. It’s a common fact.”

“If our actions are careless, Syria could become Afghanistan-like, a hotbed, even an absolutely uncontrollable hotbed of terroristic threat, including for the European states,” he said.

“And sooner or later all those extremists who reside in Syria now will move to other countries, including European,” Putin said.