03:39 GMT08 August 2020
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    Franz Klintsevich, the first deputy chairman of the Defense and Security Committee of the Russian parliament's upper house, called remark of CIA Director that Russia is intentionally turning Syria into a wasteland "unfounded."

    MOSCOW(Sputnik) — Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) Director John Brennan's claims that Russia is intentionally turning Syria into a wasteland are unsubstantiated, Franz Klintsevich, the first deputy chairman of the Defense and Security Committee of the Russian parliament's upper house, said Wednesday.

    On Tuesday, Brennan told US media that Russia was playing by its own rules in Syria by pursuing a "scorched earth policy" which has claimed thousands of innocent lives. Brennan said that the United States would never act likewise during a military conflict.

    "CIA Director John Brennan has not provided a single piece of evidence on Russia using scorched earth policies in Syria. His statements are as unfounded as accusations of Moscow carrying out cyberattacks during the US presidential elections," Klintsevich told RIA Novosti.

    US intelligence agencies have claimed Russia engaged in the hacking of US political institutions and individuals to help President-elect Donald Trump win the last presidential election. In Tuesday's interview, Brennan said a US intelligence report allegedly proving Russian involvement was in the final stages of completion. The claims have been denied by Russia as well as Trump.

    The United States has itself practiced the things Brennan accused Russia of doing, namely dropping nuclear bombs on Japan during World War II, destroying Dresden and invading Iraq, he stressed.

    "Did the United States leave anything but scorched earth, which still only yields terrorists, after the invasion of Iraq?" Klintsevich said.

    Russia launched anti-terrorist operation in Syria in September 2015 upon Damascus' request, when the US-led coalition had already been bombing Islamists in Syria and neighboring Iraq for over a year. The Russian military has initiated several lulls in fighting on the ground. The recent one came into being last in late December and is expected to be followed by peace talks between the Syrian government and moderate opposition.


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