US Plan to Form New Armed Militia of 30,000 Mercenaries in Syria Unacceptable - Says Shaaban

DAMASCUS, (ST)- The US plan to form a new armed militia of 30,000 mercenaries and to deploy them in the Syrian territory near the Iraqi and Turkish borders is unacceptable and strongly condemned, the Presidential Political and Media Advisor Bouthaina Shaaban has underscored, pointing out that the move aims at cutting the contact between Syria and Iraq and finding a place for what the US called "opposition groups".

"These militias are illegitimate and they are considered as an occupier because they have presence on the Syrian territory without the approval of the Syrian government," Shaaban said during her meeting on Sunday with Deputy Director of the Department of West Asia and North Africa Affairs at the Chinese Foreign Ministry Feng Biao and the accompanying delegation.

  Shaaban condemned  the Turkish brutal aggression on Afrin, which started yesterday, pointing out that such aggression wouldn't have been done without a green light from the United States.  

She added that the Turkish attack completes the American aggression, represented in creating the illegitimate border force, pointing out that the US move aims to prolong the war and hamper any effort to find a political solution to crisis in Syria.

"Syria seeks finding a comprehensive political solution that achieves the Syrians' interests and that is chosen by the Syrians themselves not by the US or Turkey, and it won't accept anything that divides the country," the presidential political advisor said .  

During the meeting, Shaaban and Biao discussed the situation in Syria and the region in addition to cooperation between the two countries, particularly in reconstruction era.

Syrian Government Welcomes Chinese, Russian and Iranian Role in Syria Reconstruction

She made it clear that the Syrian government welcomes an active role by China, Russia and Iran in Syria's reconstruction, stressing that Syria will continue fighting terrorism until it is completely eliminated and until security and stability is restored to the entire Syrian territory.

On his part, Biao voiced his country's readiness to enhance political, economic and strategic cooperation with Syria, mainly in the reconstruction era, and to encourage Chinese companies to take part in the process of rebuilding the country.

 The Chinese diplomat renewed China's support for Syria in its war on terrorism and in defense the country's sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity. He asserted Beijing's rejection to any attempt to divide Syria, noting willingness to actively take part in the forthcoming Syrian national Dialogue Congress in Sochi.

 Syria's Rejection to Illegitimate Presence of Any Foreign Forces on Its Territories Reiterated


Earlier, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates on Sunday thanked the People's Republic of China for supporting Syria in its war on terrorism and for the humanitarian aid Beijing has provided to the Syrian people during the years of the crisis in the country.

Meeting a delegation representing the Chinese Foreign Ministry led by Feng Biao, Deputy Director of the Department of West Asia and North Africa Affairs, al-Mikdad expressed the Syrian government's satisfaction over the development of Syria-China relations in different domains and its hope that these ties will be enhanced further.

 Al-Mikdad talked to the guest delegation about the latest gains achieved by the Syrian Arab army and its allied and backup forces in the battle against terrorism.

He reiterated Syria's rejection to the illegitimate presence of any foreign troops  on the Syrian territories and condemned the repeated Turkish attacks on Syria's sovereignty, most recent of which is the aggression on the Syrian city of Afrin.

On his part, Biao voiced the support of the Chinese government to the Syrian people and government against terrorism, affirming that China is against intervention in the Syrian internal affairs. Ha also expressed his country's willingness to boost bilateral ties between Syria and China at all levels, reiterating China's firm stance on solving the crisis in Syria based on dialogue without foreign interference.

He stressed that China welcomed Syria's participation in the One Belt and On Road (OBOR)   Initiative, proposed by the Chinese president Xi Jinping, asserting Beijing's firm and positive stance on active participation in Syria rebuilding and its readiness to provide training for Syrian staff in the field of development and reconstruction.

Hamda Mustafa