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    In this undated file photo released by a militant website, which has been verified and is consistent with other AP reporting, militants of the Islamic State group hold up their weapons and wave its flags on their vehicles in a convoy on a road leading to Iraq, while riding in Raqqa city in Syria

    Venezuela Supports Russian Airstrikes Against ISIL in Syria - Envoy to UN

    © AP Photo / Militant website via AP, File
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    Venezuela supports Russia’s decision to conduct airstrikes against the Islamic State terrorists in Syria, Venezuela's Permanent Representative to the United Nations Rafael Ramirez told Sputnik.

    UNITED NATIONS (Sputnik) — Russia’s decision to launch airstrikes in Syria came days after Russia, Syria, Iran and Iraq signed a deal to create the Baghdad Information Center for intelligence and security cooperation against terrorists.

    "We support it because we believe that the Russian Federation and the Syrian Government have coordination to fight against the terrorism which is in a very terrible phenomenon in Syria", Ramirez said on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly on Wednesday.

    Earlier on Wednesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin authorized airstrikes against the Islamic State at the request of the Syrian government. The Russian Defense Ministry confirmed that it carried out some 20 combat missions in Syria striking at least eight Islamic State targets.

    "Here in the United Nations in the Security Council, Venezuela believes that we have to confront ISIS [Islamic State] and the other groups, and to defend the sovereignty of the Syrian government and the integrity of the territory of Syria," Ramirez said.

    He added that they are currently reviewing the resolution on joining efforts against the Islamic State presented by Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov to the UN Security Council members.

    The resolution is based on documents previously adopted by the Security Council with an emphasis on coherent counter-terrorism based on norms and principles of international law, according to Lavrov.

    The Islamic State is one of several extremist Islamist groups that the Syria Army has been battling amid the ongoing civil war in the country.

    Talking With Assad Gov’t. Matter of Diplomatic Principle

    Keeping lines of communication open with the Syrian government of Bashar Assad is a standard of diplomacy, Rafael Ramirez added.

    "It is a principle," Ramirez said on Wednesday when asked if it was necessary for his nation to talk to Syrian President Assad.

    Ramirez affirmed that dialogue is "always" necessary.

    Despite countries in the West, including the United States, cutting off diplomatic ties with the Syrian government, Venezuela continues to work with Assad, notably on solving the Syrian refugee crisis.

    "We offered to receive 20,000 refugees from Syria and then we are working with the government of Syria in order to help in the humanitarian situation created by the world," he said.

    Russia Versus ISIL in Syria (618)


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