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Assad to Sputnik: Syria Has Evidence That United States Training Terrorists at Al-Tanf Military Base

© Sputnik / Mikhail Tereschenko/Pool / Go to the mediabankПрезидент Сирии Башар Асад возложил цветы к Могиле Неизвестного Солдата
Президент Сирии Башар Асад возложил цветы к Могиле Неизвестного Солдата - Sputnik International, 1920, 16.03.2023
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The Syrian leadership has evidence that the United States is training terrorists on the territory of the Al-Tanf military base, Syrian President Bashar Assad said in an interview with Sputnik.
Sputnik was the first international news agency to interview the Syrian president right after talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin in the Kremlin on Wednesday.
"We have direct encounters with terrorist groups near the Al-Tanf area, and of course, we know from these encounters and from detainees where they came from. Al-Tanf represents an entire terrorist camp, and it has no other goal. What does the US get out of its presence in this area in the heart of the desert? No doubt that they have camps for terrorists that house tens of thousands with their families," Assad said.
From time to time, the US send these people "to carry out terrorist attacks against the Syrian army to disperse the units in different directions," the president said.
"We are sure of this, the evidence is actually there," Assad added.
However, Bashar al-Assad believes that the United States may redeploy terrorists from Syria to Ukraine in a bid to confront Russia.
"Regarding this [US sending terrorists from Syria to Ukraine], we have no evidence, but it is to be expected. The US redeploys terrorists from one place to another, in addition to the fact that terrorists move on their own. But the terrorists in Syria are what they call 'Islamic terrorists,' who hide behind religion. There is no religious war in Ukraine, but they [terrorists] are there, judging by the videos circulating on the internet," Assad said.
These fighters did not go to Ukraine because of jihad, the president said, noting that "it is certain that someone has deployed them [there] and undoubtedly this was done under the auspices of the United States and its agents from Western countries."
"This is a common issue that happens all the time and has nothing to do with Syria or Ukraine, it has to do with the mechanism of action of America and Western countries in the matter of using terrorism as their agent in the wars they are waging. Eventually, there are terrorists who are transferred from other regions, including from Syria, to fight against Russia in Ukraine," Assad added.
Al-Tanf is a small outpost in southeastern Syria along the Baghdad-Damascus highway. US troops have used the base for counterterrorism operations against the Islamic State terrorist group (banned in Russia) and to train Syrian fighters since at least 2016.
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