Damascus will continue to battle terrorists until it regains full control of Syrian territory and re-establishes security, President Bashar Assad has said. His top adviser, has meanwhile branded all foreign troops present in Syria without authorization as “illegal invaders.”
The war in Syria will continue until full “recovery of security and stability to all Syrian lands,” Assad said Tuesday after talks with Ali Akbar Velayati, the foreign policy adviser to Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
Assad said the Syrian Arab Army (SAR) is engaging not only terrorists but also those who seek to “divide and weaken states.” The Syrian president was apparently referring to the Turkish-backed Free Syrian Army (FSA) and the American-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) which are battling Damascus to control parts of Syria.
Assad’s comments on Tuesday followed a statement made by Velayati on Friday, who said the Syrian Army will soon challenge the SDF for Raqqa which Damascus still considers to be under occupation. “We will witness in the near future the advance of government and popular forces in Syria and east of the Euphrates, and the liberation of Raqqa city,” Velayati said.
US and Turkish troops and advisers are “illegal invader” forces, Bouthaina Shaaban, Assad’s senior advisor told the Lebanon-based al-Mayadeen news. Shaaban underlined that Damascus would never allow the partition of Syria, advising Kurds, which form the backbone of the American led SDF, to embrace the national unity dialogue process.
“Everything is up to the Syrians and to discussions between Syrians, and there cannot be a discussion on the division or cutting up of a part of the country or on so-called federalism,” Shaaban said, according to Reuters. “I don’t think any government can discuss with any group when it comes to the topic of the country’s unity.”