Geneva, SANA – Speaker of the Syrian People’s Assembly Mohammad Jihad al-Laham said that those who reject coordination with the Russian-Syrian alliance against terrorism under any pretext are merely looking for excuse to refrain from cooperating in fighting international terrorism, and at the same time they provide support to ISIS and Jabhat al-Nusra terrorist organizations.
In a speech at the 133rd Assembly of the Inter-parliamentary Union (IPU) which began its activities on Saturday in Geneva, al-Laham said that if the world’s governments are serious about fighting terrorism, they must follow Russia’s example and coordinate with the Syrian and Iraqi governments in order to eliminate terrorism before it spreads.
He said that while aerial operations are important, counter-terrorism requires ground forces to canvass areas, and such forces are the Syrian Arab Army, the Iraqi army, and some defense groups that coordinate with them, asserting that this can’t be done by training “moderate” fighters in neighboring countries as Washington did, adding “everyone knows where those moderates ended up and where their American weapons ended up.”
Al-Laham said that the West’s policies that sought to destabilize Syria have begun to have negative repercussions on neighboring countries and on Europe through the refugee crisis and through the return of “foreign fighters,” stressing that what is happening in Syria is caused by the interference of some Western and Arab countries and their support to armed groups.
He noted that the Syrian Arab Army managed to stand up to terrorist organizations, while the international response in terms of fighting terrorism remains lacking and hindered by narrow interests and erroneous policies.
The Speaker said that the Washington-led alliance failed to prevent the spread of terrorist organizations, and that this alliance’s actual goal is to direct terrorism and isolate it within Syria to weaken it, and after failing to make any results against ISIS on the ground, the member states of the alliance began to criticize the Russian operations in Syria. In this regard, he lauded Russia’s role and the results it achieved within a few days after the beginning of its operations.
Regarding the issue of refugees, al-Laham said this issue is resolved by ending violence in Syria, Iraq, and other countries affected by terrorism, as well as lifting the sanctions imposed on Syria that affect civilians’ living standards, and fulfilling states’ obligations regarding the relief process, as well as refraining from exploiting this issue for personal gains.
He asserted that fighting terrorism isn’t an alternative to political work with the real Syrian opposition that wants to help build and develop Syria, and that the Syrian government’s hands are extended to those who want to enter dialogue.