MOSCOW, September 23 (RIA Novosti) - The Ambassador of the Syrian Arab Republic in Russia Riyad Haddad denied any coordination with the United States Air Force regarding the US airstrikes against the Islamic State (IS) targets in Syria on Tuesday, but confirmed that Damascus knew of the upcoming operation in advance.
"There has been no coordination with the US Air Force, and what is being said [of such coordination] is not true," the ambassador said in an interview with RIA Novosti adding that "The United States has informed the permanent Syrian Ambassador to the United Nations Bashar Jaafari that the United States and some of its supporters are going to carry out airstrikes on IS targets in Syria."
According to the ambassador, the United States had informed Damascus of the upcoming airstrikes a few hours before the launch of the operation.
Syria believes that the implementation of such an operation should take place within the framework of full respect for its sovereignty, and any neglect of this would be a violation of international law and regulations. Syria reaffirmed the country's willingness to cooperate in the fight against terrorism within this framework.
The United States has carried out airstrikes against Islamic State targets in Syria with the aid of Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates, Fox News reported Tuesday, citing an anonymous source. The airstrikes targeted around 20 IS facilities, including training sites and arms depots. The United States reportedly used B-1 bombers, F-16 and F-18 fighters, MQ-1 Predator drones and Tomahawk missiles fired from the USS Arleigh Burke destroyer, deployed in the Red Sea.
The IS, also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) or the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), has been fighting the Syrian government since 2012. In June 2014, the group extended its attacks to northern and western Iraq, declaring a caliphate on the territories over which it had control.