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mardi 11 avril 2017

Putin on US strikes on Syria and chemical weapons: “It’s boring, ladies.”

Press statements following Vladimir Putin's meeting with President of Italy Sergio Mattarell

Kremlin, April 11th, 2017 



Transcript :

Question: Mr Putin, if I may, I have a question about Syria. What is your take on what is happening in Syria? Is there a danger of another US military strike against Syrian targets?

Vladimir Putin: We discussed this with the President. I said that this reminds me very much of the events of 2003, when US representatives in the Security Council showed alleged chemical weapons discovered in Iraq. A military campaign in Iraq ensued, which ended with the destruction of the country, an increased terrorist threat and the emergence of ISIS on the international scene – no more, no less.

The exact same thing is happening now, and their partners are nodding approvingly. In this connection, our remarkable writers, Ilf and Petrov, come to mind, with their famous line, “It’s boring, ladies.“ We have seen this all before.

Why is this happening? Everyone wants to restore relations in the Western community after – thanks to the former US administration – many European countries adopted an anti-Trump position during the election campaign. Syria and Russia, as a common enemy, provide a wonderful platform for consolidation. We are ready to put up with that for a while in the hope that it will eventually lead us to some positive trend based on interaction.

For consumption within America, there are reasons for this. Simply put, political opponents of the incumbent president are still out there, and if anything happens, it will be blamed on him. I have no doubt about that.

Now about whether new attacks are possible or not. We have information from a variety of sources that such provocations (I cannot find another word for this) are being prepared in other parts of Syria, including in southern suburbs of Damascus, where they are planning to plant certain substances and accuse Syrian authorities of using them.

However, we believe that things like this should be thoroughly investigated. We plan to officially address the appropriate UN institution in The Hague and call on the international community to thoroughly investigate these matters. A weighted decision can then be taken depending on the findings of the investigation.

dimanche 9 avril 2017

Ex-UK ambassador to Syria: Assad is not the author of chemical attacks

Interview of Peter Ford by Sky News on April 5, 2017


Transcript:

“Ask who benefits – clearly it’s not the Syrian regime or the Russians who are benefitting. And I believe it’s highly unlikely that either were behind what’s happened. There are different possibilities. One is that all of it is fake news: the images, the videos, the information all come from opposition sources and not from any credible independent journalists.


It’s also possible that the pictures show the aftermath of a bombing attack which happened to hit a jihadi chemical weapons munition dump. We know for a fact that the jihadi’s were storing chemical weapons in schools in Eastern Aleppo because these were seen later by western journalists. This is one distinct possibility. […]

We never learn, do we? Iraq’s chemical weapons – remember that one? We were stampeded. Aleppo, we were told that there was a holocaust going on – massacres – didn’t happen. Independent reporters went in afterwards and saw no evidence of massacres. What we did see were fighters being bussed out quietly. And we discovered subsequently that a lot of the footage was fake.

Asked whether western intervention in 2013 “might have changed things”, Ford replies:

Well, it’s not profitable to discuss the what-might-have-been – personally, I think it was correct in 2013 not to intervene on the side of the jihadis. Maybe I’m wrong, but I suspect that most of the people, when they thought about it for a second, would ask themselves: well, what’s going to replace Assad and the secular regime which is protecting minorities, Christians, women’s rights? I don’t think the Islamists would have been a better bet, and that is even more the case today. Remember that in Idlib where this happened is a rats’ nest of the most extreme jihadis.

Dogs returning to their own vomit. They made all these mistakes: Iraq, Libya – they never learn and they would like to reproduce the same scenario in Syria. Fortunately, the Trump administration moved only last week – and this may be significant here – moved only last week to disown the Obama policy of trying to unseat the Syrian regime. Trump’s people said: we’re more interested in unseating ISIS – that’s our priority. And you may think it’s significant that this attack comes days after that. Now if the jihadis wanted to complicate Trump’s task of making America’s policy more sensible, they wouldn’t have gone about it any other way than trying to mount a piece of fake news like this.”