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    In this photo taken on Tuesday May 23, 2017, provided by the Syrian anti-government activist group, the Hammurabi's Justice News, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, shows a U.S.-backed anti-government Syrian fighter form Maghaweer al-Thawra stands on a vehicle with heavy automatic machine gun, left, next of an American soldier who also stands on his armored vehicle, right, as they take their position at the Syrian-Iraqi crossing border point of Tanf, south Syria

    Militants Move Freely in US-Controlled Zone in Syria - Russian Security Council

    © AP Photo / Hammurabi's Justice News
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Militants are moving freely near the US base in Syria's al-Tanf region, while UN humanitarian convoys cannot reach the area, Alexander Venediktov, the assistant to the secretary of the Russian Security Council, told Sputnik.

    "The situation when the United States is virtually occupying a 55-kilometer [34-mile] zone around At Tanf on the Syrian-Jordanian border without the consent of the Syrian government, is bewildering. This zone includes the infamous Rukban refugee camp, where militants from illegal armed groups are freely moving near the US Armed Forces," Venediktov said.

    At the same time, Venediktov stressed that the access to the zone was closed for UN humanitarian convoys, which were trying to reach the refugee camp from Syrian territory.

    "It remains a mystery how this corresponds to Washington's anti-terrorism goals in Syria," he noted.

    Speaking further on the Syrian issue, Venediktov said terrorists in the Arab Republic had moved from major combat operations to tactics of guerrilla warfare.

    "The Islamic State terrorist group [Daesh] on Syrian territory has suffered extensive damage. In these conditions, terrorists moved from large-scale military operations to tactics of guerrilla war," Venediktov said.

    He added that other militant groups, including Jabhat al-Nusra in the Idlib province and Ahrar al-Sham in Eastern Ghouta, continued to conduct armed resistance to Syrian government forces.

    On US Support of Syrian Kurds

    According to the official, external interference, such as the creation by the United States of about 20 military bases in Syrian Kurdistan, hinders bringing peace and stability to Syria.

    "The return of peace and stability to Syria is hampered by continued external interference in the Syrian crisis. For example, on the territory controlled by the people's self-defense units of Kurdistan, about 20 US military bases have been created," Venediktov said.

    Thus, by supplying Syrian Kurdish forces with sophisticated weapons, the United States virtually provoked Turkish authorities into launching a military operation in Syria's Afrin.

    "The Kurds are literally being pumped with advanced weaponry. The deliveries of sophisticated weapons and encouragement of separatist sentiments among the Kurds have in fact provoked Turkey into carrying out the military operation in Syria's northern Afrin region," Venediktov said.

    The Turkish Armed Forces have been carrying out the Operation Olive Branch since January 20, after Washington had announced that it would start training a 30,000-strong border security forces, comprised of the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) and the Democratic Union Party (PYD), which Ankara considers affiliates of the Turkish Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey.

    Related:

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    Syria Cannot Use Chemical Weapons Because It Has None - Syrian Envoy to UN
    Tags:
    militants, Russian Security Council, Turkey, Syria, United States
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