Bashar Assad warned against hitting U.S

Hannah Rogers
June 4, 2018

On April 9, an Israeli airstrike against the T-4 airbase in Syria's Homs province killed more than a dozen people, including seven Iranian military advisors. Damascus has not engaged in talks about the south, and any agreement over that region must include the pullout of USA forces, he said. He said Israel and Russian Federation were holding intense discussions regarding Iranian military presence in Syria, which he believes is spearheaded at Israel.

The Defense Department's warnings for Syria come amid reports that Iranian and Iranian-backed Hezbollah fighters may have begun withdrawing from areas in southern part of the country close to the tense border with Israel.

Assad's threat to use force against US allies in Syria and about 2,000 American troops providing them with air support and training prompted a warning from the Pentagon.

"There are Iranian advisers in Syria some of whom were martyred while working with the Syrian Arab army and their presence is part of an agreement and in co-ordination with the armed forces on where they should be", al-Moallem said. Pentagon spokeswoman Dana White later clarified the USA did not want to get involved in Syria's civil war, and would offer protection only in areas where the SDF are fighting the militant Islamic State group.

A Russian source said that Moscow refuses to offer details about the understanding with Tel Aviv to respect the balance in its separate relationships with each of Israel and Iran.

Assad in the RT interview also sought to minimize the extent of Iran's presence in Syria.

It's too soon to say whether Israel's diplomacy with Russian Federation will result in the removal of Iran and its allied militias from Syria altogether.

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This is apparently under the terms of a deal being negotiated by Russian Federation and Israel for Iranian-backed forces to pull back and prevent a bigger conflict.

But Russia's intervention turned Syria into a powder keg for world powers.

In a speech at the Heritage Foundation on May 21, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo demanded that Iran halt all uranium enrichment, stop its ballistic-missile program and give nuclear inspectors access to the entire country.

In the course of their recent advances in terrorist-held areas, Syrian government forces have discovered considerable amounts of Israeli-made munitions, including chemical warfare, digital equipment and drugs.

That includes large parts of the north and east where USA special forces deployed during the fight against Islamic State, supporting the Kurdish-dominated Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

"As we have declared earlier, Iranian advisers have no presence in southern Syria", he said. "We consider what have been achieved in Syria result of Syrians' efforts to eradicate terrorism", noted Shamkhani who was defense chief from 1997 to 2005.

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