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    US Troops in Syria: 'Aim to Sabotage Russia Rather Than Fight ISIL'

    © AFP 2019 / MARK WILSON / POOL
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    Islamic State militants seized the Syrian town of Maheen in southwestern Homs province on Sunday. The offensive started with two suicide bomb attacks, after hours of fierce battle government forces withdrew from the city.

    The Syrian Observatory for Human rights said the capture of Maheen was a response to the recent attacks on ISIL positions.

    The new US backed Syrian opposition, called the Democratic Forces of Syria, has recently launched offensive on ISIL positions in Hasaka province, which borders Iraqi territory and is critical for the jihadist group.

    The United States is also planning to deploy its troops to help battle the Islamic State. Fewer than 50 soldiers would be sent to Syria to train, advise and assist the country’s opposition forces.

    Finian Cunningham, a British freelance journalist working on international affairs, spoke to Sputnik in an exclusive interview saying that the US move is not aimed to counter ISIL, but rather restrict Russia’s air operations against the jihadist group.

    “It would be a complete violation of the international law if the US sends its troops into Syria no matter what number of troops,” Cunningham said.

    Talking about the real purpose of this mission he said, “I am very skeptical about it just like the yearlong air campaign that the US led coalition has allegedly been running to defeat ISIL. That was completely ineffective and sending troops in there to fight ISIL, I just don’t buy it.”

    He further said, “They are sending 50 troops and that is not going to be a game changer. It’s not going to strike a strategic blow against ISIL so I think it is a way of the US forces trying to strip Russia of its air campaign. The US is not cooperating with these troops and I think that the real purpose is to introduce a risk factor on the ground for the Russian military because the Russians would not want to accidentally hit the US forces.”

    Talking about Syria he said that it is a sovereign government and President Assad was elected just last year. He said that the fate of Assad is not really up to the West, “Who are these foreign pars who are presenting the option that Assad has to go? It is an illicit interference into a foreign country. No outside par has the right to get involved.”

    Cunningham stressed that the US, France, Britain and regional allies such as Saudi Arabia have not respected the Geneva Communique that was established years ago.

    “We have this prerogative to interfere into the affairs of foreign states and demand the resignation of its president. It is unlawful interference by foreign government.”

    He further spoke about the extremists and how they are instrumented by the West since Afghanistan going back to the late 70’s.

    “The links with al-Qaeda, ISIL these extremists are just proxy forces for the imperialist pars. The West is orchestrating trouble for Russia by instrumenting these jihadists. I have seen reports of a lot of movement of these ISIL personnel through Ukraine they are proxy forces for the western pars. ”

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    Tags:
    Daesh, international law, campaign, violation, troops, US Armed Forces, Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, Bashar al-Assad, Syria, United States