News / Middle East

Russia Warns US Against More Support for Syria's Opposition

An image grab taken from a propaganda video uploaded on June 8, 2014, by the jihadist group the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant [ISIL] allegedly shows ISIL militants gathered near Tikrit, Iraq.
An image grab taken from a propaganda video uploaded on June 8, 2014, by the jihadist group the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant [ISIL] allegedly shows ISIL militants gathered near Tikrit, Iraq.
Reuters

Russia warned the United States on Monday against stepping up support for Syria's opposition, saying it would only bolster a caliphate declared by the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant [ISIL] in part of Iraq and Syria.

Baghdad called for international help as it is struggling to contain an offensive by the ISIL, an al-Qaida splinter group, which overran Iraq's Mosul earlier in June. It also captured territory in the north and east of Syria.

“The jihadists have challenged not only their competing extremist groups, hiding under the slogans of Islam, but also the countries of the Islamic world,” Russia's Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

Five Russian Sukhoi Su-25 fighter jets arrived in Baghdad late on Saturday, and Iraqi state television said they would be used to fight the ISIL. Washington also dispatched military advisers to help Iraq stamp out a renewed militant threat.

But in neighboring Syria, Moscow and Washington have thrown their weight behind rival forces in an uprising that started early in 2011 with Russia siding with President Bashar al-Assad and the United States with those seeking to oust him.

The Russian ministry criticized as “more than strange” a call to the U.S. Congress by President Barack Obama for $500 million to train and equip “those whom the White House calls 'moderate' units of the armed Syrian opposition”.

“Given the real situation on the ground, these considerable funds, if allocated, would in fact serve entirely to strengthen the terrorist 'caliphate' proclaimed by the ISIL,” it said. “Under the circumstances in which terrorist and extremist groups have secured their dominant role among anti-governmental forces in Syria, the best arms and best prepared fighters would end up with them.”

Defending Obama's move, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Friday said that the moderate Syrian opposition had a key role in repelling the ISIL.

Separately, Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich, when asked on Monday about the Su-25 deliveries to Iraq, said Russian arms supplies to Baghdad were now completed, but he gave no more detail.

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by: minas
July 01, 2014 1:36 PM
I am so angry that I cannot even express my feelings. I simply cannot believe it that the money that I pay as tax is being used to fund rebels with dubious connections to terrorist organizations. Thousands of innocent Christians have been killed at the hands these rebels in Syria and this administration hasn't done anything to help them.
God knows what I would do if I met that so-called president.

by: 1worldnow from: Earth
July 01, 2014 5:14 AM
Really? No kidding! That's what most of the citizens of the US are saying as well!!! But as you can tell, the CITIZENS of the world speak to the leaders ears that don't care about our concerns. But Russia should look in the mirror when telling other nations what they should or shouldn't do (Ukraine!!!!). All of our world leaders are pathetic!!

by: Ali baba from: New York
July 01, 2014 3:30 AM
I think that Russia has a point that it should be considered. If we want to eliminate these Muslim extremist , we should build a cooperation that include Russia even we do have different ideology . Russia and West have to work tighter to fight the Muslim extremist ,it is common goal. .since Arabs are using double standard , there is possibility that we are dealing with wrong people. They may use our weapons against us such as happen In Afghanistan and Libya. The questions which Washington never ask. What is the grantee to trust them? both which they considerate moderate and Extremists are working together To Fight Assad . It is proven that Assad is less evil than radical Sunni. He is secular . he is protected Christian whom they are slaughter like a sheep . Sooner or later ,the radical and moderate will come together

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