US Troops in Syria ’to Add Fuel to Fire in Region’
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said any bid by the US to dispatch ground troops to Syria to allegedly fight Daesh [ISIS/ISIL] Takfiri terrorists in the country would fan the flames of extremism in the Middle East and adversely impact the security of the whole world.
"We cannot commit to solutions that are part of the problem. I believe that the presence of foreign troops in Arab territory is a recipe for those extremists to rally behind and gain new fighters from disenfranchised youth," Zarif said in an interview with CNN on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference on Friday.
A US military official recently suggested that the White House may authorize sending combat troops to Syria.
"It's possible that you may see conventional forces hit the ground in Syria for some period of time," CNN reported on Wednesday night, citing the official.
During the presidential campaign, US President Donald Trump had openly supported deploying a large contingent of US troops to Syria.
"We really have no choice, we have to knock out ‘ISIS'," Trump said in March. "I would listen to the generals, but I'm hearing numbers of 20,000-30,000."
The US has already sent several hundred of its special operations forces to Syria. However, their operations have been limited to what the Pentagon describes as training and assisting Kurdish fighters in their battle against Daesh and other terrorist groups.
Zarif added that a nationwide ceasefire in Syria was largely working, adding that the US "occupation" of Iraq is to blame for the creation of Daesh terrorist group.
The nationwide ceasefire, which was brokered by Russia and Turkey with the support of Iran in December 2016, is the extended version of an earlier truce that ended years of fighting in the Syrian city of Aleppo and put the strategic city back under Damascus control.
The Iranian foreign minister said Trump himself has accused former President Barack Obama of creating Daesh and criticized Washington's policy of arming so-called opposition groups in Syria.
Further touching upon the foreign-backed crisis in Syria, Zarif said, "The same people who armed Daesh, armed the terrorist groups, were the same people who armed [Iraq's executed dictator] Saddam Hussein, were the same people who created and armed al-Qaeda."
"We should not continue to repeat history and then blame people who were on the right side," he pointed out.
Iran has been offering military advisory support to the Syrian military, which has been battling foreign-backed militancy since 2011.
Elsewhere, Zarif also said the landmark nuclear agreement, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action [JCPOA], signed by the Islamic Republic and six world powers in 2015 would stay in place, despite claims to the contrary from members of the Trump administration.
There was an international consensus not to let the nuclear agreement unravel, he added.
Source: News Agencies, Edited by website team