28 Feb 2020 12:14

Russia to carefully consider its actions in Idlib - MP Dzhabarov

MOSCOW. Feb 28 (Interfax) - Russia is supporting the Syrian army in Idlib to the extent of fighting terrorists and will carefully consider its every move in order not to cause any harm, Federation Council Foreign Affairs Committee First Deputy Chairman Vladimir Dzhabarov said.

"We went there for the long run, and we have bases in Hmeimim and Tartus. We went to assist the legitimate regime on legitimate grounds and at the invitation of the legitimate president. However, we have no intention of interfering in any domestic conflicts and we are not directly involved in the hostilities. Our Aerospace Forces back up the Syrians only when they are fighting terrorists. So, I believe we should carefully consider every move in order to do no harm. This is what we will be doing," Dzhabarov told Interfax on Friday.

Turkey did not meet its obligation to de-escalate tensions in the Idlib area, Dzhabarov said.

"They promised to deal with the terrorists and to separate the terrorists from the opposition. They did not do that," he said.

"What's more, they [pro-Turkish forces] mingled with extremist forces, which created problems for the Syrian army and our Aerospace Forces supporting Syrian troops. We are unaware of their whereabouts, so Turkish army soldiers could come under attack, which naturally causes increasing irritation in Turkey," Dzhabarov said.

The sooner Turkey drops its plans for trying to keep Syrian forces away from Idlib and seizing this territory the better, he said.

"In fact, neither country would agree to such alienation of its lands. The policy which is being pursued by Turkey suggests that the Turks might have gone there to stay. This is bad," Dzhabarov said.

He said he hoped that Russia and Turkey would manage to maintain the existent level of trust.