Syria's Liberation From Daesh
Syria’s liberation from Daesh (banned in Russia) has particular importance for settling the country's crisis, which, however, also requires political dialogue between all the Syrian sides, the country’s ambassador to China and former ambassador to the United States, Imad Moustapha, told Sputnik on Thursday.
"This achievement may not be the final step towards the full defeat of terrorism but it is a watershed moment after which the beginning of the end is a matter of time. However, the Syrian crisis settlement still needs a considerable amount of political dialogue and engagement by all parties willing to put the interests of Syria and the Syrian people above all vested interests," Moustapha said.
"The future will prove that Russia stood on the right side of history. More important is that the continued presence of the Russian military in Syria is both a concrete and symbolic affirmation of its strategic determination to prevent the reemergence of terrorist groups in Syria and the region," the ambassador pointed out.
US assistance in Fighting Daesh in Syria
Additionally, Washington is unlikely to accept Russia's offer to assist the US-led international coalition in fighting Daesh (banned in Russia) in Iraq, Syria’s ambassador to China and former ambassador to the United States, Imad Moustapha, told Sputnik on Thursday.
"Russia is extending its hand and showing goodwill to the US in its efforts to eradicate terrorism in the region. However, it would be difficult to imagine that the US would welcome such an effort," Moustapha said.
The ambassador suggested that the terrorists provided the United States with a pretext to establish a foothold in Syria and reinforce military presence in Iraq.
"The US-led lukewarm air raids against Daesh in Syria and Iraq, as well as the warm and generous support provided by the US to other terrorist groups in Syria are a major indication of the real position of the US vis-a-vis jihadi terrorist groups," Moustapha pointed out.
On Wednesday, Chief of the Russian General Staff Valery Gerasimov said that the Russian Defense Ministry was ready to conduct a dialogue with US counterparts on assisting them in the elimination of terrorists in western Iraq. Gerasimov noted that the US-led international coalition needed to focus on the destruction of militants in the western regions of Iraq to prevent their return to Syria and the revival of the so-called "caliphate" there.
In response to Gerasimov's offer, US Department of Defense spokesman Eric Pahon told Sputnik that the collaboration between the United States and Russia against the Daesh would require senior leadership talks as the US military is prohibited from doing that.
On Wednesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that the Daesh had been completely defeated on both banks of the Euphrates river in Syria. On the same day, Chief of the Russian General Staff Valery Gerasimov said that Syria was fully freed from Daesh terrorists and the remaining terrorists had been defeated in Deir ez-Zor.
Syria has been engulfed in a civil war since 2011, with government forces fighting numerous opposition factions and terrorist groups. The international community has taken a number of steps aimed at settling the crisis, including through talks in Geneva and Astana.