02:11 GMT +321 February 2019
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    Azerbaijan Not Ready to Join Saudi-Led Coalition Against Terrorists Yet

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    Azerbaijan is still conseiving its possible partaking in the Saudi-led anti-terrorism coalition in Syria, Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov said Thursday.

    BAKU (Sputnik) — Azerbaijan is still considering its participation in the Saudi-led anti-terrorism coalition in Syria, Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov said Thursday.

    "A decision on the issue is pending," the minister said.

    In December, Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry spokesman Hikmat Hajiyev announced that top diplomats from Azerbaijan and Saudi Arabia had discussed the issue over the phone. The spokesman added the country's participation in any structure must to be considered with respected to the requirement of interstate procedures, in accordance with national legislation.

    Syria has been mired in civil war since 2011, with the country’s government fighting so-called moderate opposition factions and numerous jihadist groups.

    Since 2014, the US-led coalition of 66 states has been conducting airstrikes in Syria and Iraq on Islamic State (IS) and other terrorist group positions, without the approval of either Damascus or the UN Security Council.

    In September, Russia launched an aerial campaign in Syria against IS and Nusra Front groups, both banned in Russia, at the request of the Damascus government.

    In mid-December, Saudi Arabia assembled its own coalition of 34 Muslim nations to fight against Islamic extremism with a joint operation command center in Riyadh.

    Al-Nusra Front, factions, Muslims, anti-Daesh coalition, Syrian conflict, aerial campaign, anti-terrorist operation, UN Security Council, IS, Elmar Mammadyarov, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Azerbaijan
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