By staff and agency

Russia says Iran, unlike the U.S, is in Syria at request of Damascus

October 4, 2019

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has said that Iran is in Syria at the request of Damascus, unlike the United States.

“There is a strong sense that Washington’s mission is to prevent the restoration of Syria’s territorial integrity, in direct violation of Security Council Resolution 2254.”“Iran is in Syria at the request of Damascus, unlike the United States. When ISIS’ main elements in Syria are defeated, questions will arise about the purpose of the continued U.S. presence on Syrian soil. There is a strong sense that Washington’s mission is to prevent the restoration of Syria’s territorial integrity, in direct violation of Security Council Resolution 2254,” he said in an interview with Asharq Al-Awsat published on Thursday.

Iran has repeatedly said that it has advisory presence in Syria upon the request of Damascus.

Ali Shamkhani, secretary of the Supreme National Security Council, reiterated Iran’s long-held position in March, saying Iran’s presence in Syria is upon a request by Damascus to provide the country with advisory help against militants.

“We will stay in Syria as long as the Syrian government wants us to stay,” the security chief added.

The Syrian government has described the presence of Iranian military advisors in the conflict-plagued Arab country as “legitimate and lawful.”

“Syria reiterates that the Iranian presence is legitimate because it came at the request of the Syrian government and contributed to Syria’s efforts in the fight against terrorism sponsored by some participants in the summit,” Press TV quoted an unnamed source at the Syrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates in May.

NA/PA

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