19:57 GMT21 June 2021
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    The US-led coalition blatantly violated international law and UN mandates when it started airstrikes in Syria last year, Evgeni Shestakov wrote for Rossiyskaya Gazeta.

    Under the pretext of fighting against terrorism, the United States and its allies militarily intervened into the sovereignty of Syria without the approval from the legitimate government of Bashar al-Assad and without receiving an appropriate UN mandate, Shestakov said.

    When it serves Washington's interests, the US government is always quick to point out the faults of others when they disagree with UN mandates; at the same time, the Americans aren't willing to abide by a Security Council resolution on Syria. What a two-faced approach, eh?

    Furthermore, when the US-led coalition bombed Syria, the Pentagon didn't worry about providing video or any other kind of evidence that US airstrikes were indeed hitting ISIL targets. The issue of civilians being in areas covered by US airstrikes was never raised either, the journalist said.

    During the UN General Assembly meeting, nations that support the US-led airstrikes in Syria spent a lot of time talking about the number of airstrikes carried out against ISIL. However, they all missed the main point.

    Nobody spoke about the result of a year-long military operation, especially about the facts that since the start of their airstrikes ISIL has steadily increased territories under its control while the Pentagon-trained "moderate" opposition forces, once on the battlefield, joined the ranks of the jihadists.

    French President Francois Hollande proudly spoke about his country's efforts in battling international terrorism by throwing bombs on Syria. However, apart from bragging words, Hollande failed to provide any evidence of French airstrikes. Thus, who the French Rafales really bombed in Syria remains unclear, the Rossiyskaya Gazeta journalist wisely pointed out.

    Shestakov asked an important question: how can the United States be a world leader if after declaring war on the terrorists it didn't fail to defeat ISIL after more than a year of airstrikes, but also allowed the jihadists to gain more territory?

    Russia, unlike Western countries that use the pretext of fighting terrorism to interfere in Syria without a proper UN mandate, started its airstrikes on ISIL targets in Syria at the request of President Bashar al-Assad. Moscow acts on the request from Damascus and doesn't seek to impose its own political system or a new leader on the Syrian nation. The future of Syrian leadership should be resolved without outside interference, Shestakov said, citing the words of Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.    


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