MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Former UN Director-General Sergei Ordzhonikidze said that Jim Mattis made himself a "laughingstock" by saying the United Nations allegedly approved the presence of the country’s forces in Syria.
"He just doesn't understand or know what he is saying, and apparently he has no decent advisers who could tell him how to act… It is, I believe, just a shame to say things like this, for such a large state, a superpower, like the United States," Ordzhonikidze stressed.
Moreover, he added that the United States presence in Syria was illegal and was "an attempt to justify in an awkward way the illegal stay of US-led coalition forces in Syria".
The US presence in Syria has been repeatedly criticized by Damascus, which stressed that any foreign military operation taking place without government approval would be considered an illegal invasion. Russia began its operation against Daesh in Syria after the request of the Damascus government. Russia launched its military operation in Syria on September 30, 2015, at the request of the Syrian government.