Syria denies US accusations on kidnapping any US citizen who entered its territories, stayed in areas under its authority

Damascus, SANA- Foreign and Expatriates Ministry said Wednesday that the US administration, represented by the US President and Secretary of State, issued last week misleading and illogical statements on directing false accusations to the Syrian government of kidnapping or arresting American citizens, among them Austin Tice, the soldier at the US army.

The Ministry said in a statement that the US government had admitted many years ago that Austin Tice and other Americans had entered the Syrian territories illegitimately.

 The Syrian Arab Republic categorically denies the accusations on kidnapping, or hiding any American citizen who entered its territories or stayed in the areas under the sovereignty and authority of the Syrian Government, the Ministry said, renewing its complete commitment to the principles of the international law and the provisions of Vienna Convention on Consular Relations

Syria draws attention of US public opinion and officials to the fact that the government of their country has violated the provisions of Vienna Convention on Consular Relations and the provisions of Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations when it turned blind eye and even encouraged dozens of the US citizens to travel to Syria and illegitimately enter its territories and without the permission of its government via illegitimate border crossings or infiltrating to areas controlled by armed terrorist groups, the Ministry went on to say.

The Ministry pointed out that Syria stresses that any dialogue or official communication with the US side will only be openly and based on respecting the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of the Syrian Arab Republic and without interfering in its internal affairs.

The US side should immediately and unconditionally withdraw its military forces that are illegitimately existed on the Syrian territories, and stop plundering and smuggling the Syrian oil and wheat, the Ministry said, adding that it should lift the cover and protection from the armed separatist groups and the armed terrorist groups which are stationed in the US illegitimate military base of al-Tanf and put a final and unconditioned end to the unilateral coercive measures imposed by the US successive administrations on the Syrian people, the Ministry reiterated.

Manar salameh /Hala Zain

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