I just had to get this up!
Bashar Assad did an extensive interview with the Russian newspaper Izvestia.
Yes, it is the translate version. And, yes it has it's shortcomings. But, it is clear enough to understand fully what he is saying, particularly about Israeli involvement. Israeli involvement has been a reality in the destabilization of Syria. From day one I had made the case Israel was involved. And, through dozens and dozens of posts Israeli involvement/collusion with the terrorists in Syria was crystal clear. Despite all the lying claims to the otherwise made via the msm.
Bashar al-Assad: "All contracts concluded with Russia are carried out"
President of the Syrian Arab Republic in an exclusive interview with "News" - about the threat of invasion by the U.S. and the West, relations with Vladimir Putin and the common destiny of the Russians and the Syrians
Bashar al-Assad: "All contracts concluded with Russia are carried out"
In the midst of the Syrian crisis Alexander Potapov and Yuri Matsarsky met in Damascus with President Bashar Assad. In an exclusive interview with "Izvestia", he said, who is actually using chemical weapons, commented on statements by Western politicians intention to put military pressure on Syria and appreciated the assistance provided by Russia and its president of the Syrian people.
- Mr. President, the most pressing issue today - what is the situation in Syria? What territories remain under the control of the rebels?
Assad- It's not the areas that are under the control of terrorists, and territories under the control of the army. There is some enemy who occupied our land. We are dealing with terrorists infiltrating into the villages and on the outskirts of cities. They are criminals who kill innocent people, destroy infrastructure.
The army, security forces and the police tend to knock them out of the settlements and destroy. Those who manage to survive, move on to other areas and join other gangs. Thus, the essence of our business - it is the destruction of terrorists.
The main reason for the continuation of hostilities - a huge number of constantly arriving in Syria terrorists from abroad. Monthly on our land comes their tens of thousands. In addition, the continued funding of terrorists from abroad and supplying them weapons.
But I assure you that there is a place where not able to enter the government army - she comes in and destroys the terrorists wherever encounters them.
- Western press is often said that the terrorists run about 40 or 70% of the territory of Syria. In fact, as far as the Syrian government controls its territory?
Assad- No army in any country of the world will not be fully operational throughout the country. Terrorists take advantage of this by trying to penetrate everywhere, where there is no army. We purified each province, which included terrorists. Therefore, I repeat, the problem is not in the area where the terrorists, and it changes every day and every hour. The problem in many action movies coming from abroad.
Can the Syrian Arab Army to enter any area occupied by the terrorists and destroy them? I will tell you with certainty, "Yes." The army continues to do so. It takes more time, because that war that was imposed on us, does not end immediately. It takes a relatively long time. And we are paying a heavy price for the war, the destruction of all the terrorists in Syria.
- Are they terrorists, you are talking about, some of separate and distinct groups of radicals or is it part of a huge force, which aims to destabilize the situation in the Middle East, including in Syria?
Assad- We are dealing with individual groups, and with the whole terrorist armies. But they are very similar. First, ideologically. Secondly, they get money from the same sources.
Their ideology - radicalism, can not stand the existence of any other religious beliefs, except professed by the terrorists. They have common ideological leaders such as al-Zawahiri, but each group has its own guide.
Their sponsors, as I have said, are the same, it is often entire states, such as Saudi Arabia.
Despite the disunity of groups, their sponsors and thought leaders have the ability to manipulate each of them by the radical messages. For example, they may say to them: "Muslims are obliged to carry out jihad in Syria." As a result, thousands of militants are sent here to fight.
Sponsors also control the bandit group, supplying arms and funds to specific acts of terrorism.
In addition, the same Saudi Arabia combines the functions and ideologist and sponsor: circulate rebels Wahhabi ideology and support them with money.
- The Syrian government says about the close relationship between Israel and terrorists. But because the mere mention of Israel makes the radical Islamists tantrum. How, in this case the cooperation is possible between the two?
Assad-Why Israel opens fire at our troops when we beat the terrorists at the border? Not in order to to prevent us? And why Israel gives blocked at the border terrorists away from our troops on its territory, and even then attack the Syrian part of the other side? Why Israel several times in recent months attacked parts of the Syrian Arab army?
But the main evidence of cooperation results in Israel itself.
Israel has said several times that the country's hospitals treated dozens of terrorists. If these groups are so hated Israel and one utterance of his name brings them into hysterics and makes them hate, why did these radical groups that are fighting now against Egypt and Syria, throughout its history has never carried out any operations against Israel?
Well, let's remember who originally created these groups? These terrorists recruited and supported by the U.S. and the West, Saudi Arabia has funded them since the early 1980s, in order to fight the Soviets in Afghanistan. How, then, these groups started by the West and America, will be able to strike at Israel?
- Our interview with you will be translated into many languages, many world leaders, including those who oppose you, read it. What do you want to say to them?
Assad- Among the heads of state at the present time, many politicians, but few leaders. ( I could not agree more with that statement!)The fact that they do not know the history and learn from it. Some people forget the recent past.
Have they learned the lessons of the past 50 years? At least through a document of his predecessors, who failed all the wars since Vietnam, and up to now? Whether they have understood that those wars brought nothing but chaos and instability in the Middle East and in other regions of the world?
It is these policies, I would like to explain that terrorism - is not a trump card in his pocket, which you can take out and use whenever you want, and then put back. Terrorism, like a scorpion sting at any time. Accordingly, it can not be for terrorism in Syria and against him in Mali. You can not support terrorism in Chechnya and the fight against it in Afghanistan.
I will clarify what I'm saying it's not about all the leaders, and the heads of some Western countries. They would be worth to stop to climb in the affairs of other countries, creating their own puppet regimes, and to listen to the views of their people, maybe then will Western policy closer to reality.
If you insist that I sent a message to the world, I say, if someone wants to turn Syria into a puppet of the West, then it will not. We are an independent country and will fight against terrorism will be free to build its relations with those countries with which we ourselves wish, for the sake of the Syrian people.
- On Wednesday, the Syrian government has faced accusations by the rebels of using chemical weapons. This accusation was immediately picked up by a number of Western leaders. What is your response to that? Will you allow the UN Special Commission to investigate this case?
Assad- Statements made by politicians in the U.S., the West and in other countries - and an insult to common sense and disregard the public opinion of their people. This is nonsense: first indicted, and only then collect evidence. And it deals with the powerful countries - the United States. That is, on Wednesday we were accused, and only two days later the U.S. government announced the start of gathering evidence. And how do they intend to collect the evidence, while in the distance? We are accused that the army has used chemical weapons in an area that is supposedly under the control of insurgents. In fact, in this area there is no clear front line between the army and militants. And how can the government use chemical or other weapons of mass destruction in a place where concentrated his troops? This is contrary to elementary logic. So this kind of accusations are political, and the reason for this was caused by a series of victories by government forces over the terrorists.
As for the investigation of war crimes in Syria, we are the first who demanded arrival of an international commission. When terrorists fired a rocket with a poisonous gas at Aleppo, soon after numerous statements in the West about the readiness of government forces to use chemical weapons, we requested the visit of foreign experts. This position has been agreed with Russia, we would like to see the U.S., France, Britain were convinced that it was not us, but our opponents are using chemical weapons. Seen in the case of specific facts, not unsubstantiated allegations.
In recent weeks, we have been negotiating with the UN on the work of the commission, at last, the experts came to us (in a few hours after the interview, it became known that the government of Syria and the UN commission agreed on a procedure for joint action to investigate the alleged use of chemical weapons. - "Proceedings "). The results of their work will be presented at the UN.
But you also know that any results can be interpreted in favor of individual countries. Therefore, we expect that Russia will not allow to interpret the documents in the interests of the U.S. and Western policies in general.
- Judging from the statements of U.S. leadership and a number of other Western countries made in the last few days, the Americans do not rule out military action in Syria. You admit that the United States will act in the same manner as operating in Iraq, trying to find a pretext for an invasion?
Assad- The question of military intervention in Syria rises is not the first time. From the very beginning of the crisis the United States, France and Britain were trying to make a military intervention, but to their misfortune, things took a different turn. They tried to convince Russia and China to change its position on the UN Security Council, but it did not work out.
They were unable to convince their people and the world that they have undertaken in the Middle East policy is clever and useful. It was also found that the situation here is different from the situation in Egypt and Tunisia.
The same scenario of "Arab revolution" has ceased to be convincing. They can start any war, but can not know how long it will last and how much territory spreads. They realized that their script was out of control.
Another obstacle to military intervention - the understanding of all that is happening in Syria - it is not the people's revolution and demand reforms. This is terrorism. In this situation, the Western leaders can not tell its citizens: "We are going to Syria in order to support terrorism."
- Mr President, with which the United States will face if they do dare to strike against Syria or even an invasion of the country?
Assad: The U.S. is waiting for failure, as in all previous wars waged by them, from Vietnam to the present day. America participated in numerous wars, but has never been able to achieve their political objectives for which these wars began. She was not able to convince his multi-ethnic people in the righteousness of the war, as well as to instill their ideology to other countries. Yes, indeed, great powers can unleash a war, but can they win?
- Are you in a relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin? Do you communicate with him on the phone? If yes, what issues to discuss?
Assad: We are with President Vladimir Putin's long-standing relationship established long before the Syrian crisis. From time to time we contact them. Of course, over the phone to discuss such complex issues as the Syrian crisis, it is impossible. Relations between our countries are now supported through the Russian decision-makers who visit us, either through their Syrian counterparts, which are sent to Moscow.
- Are you planning to visit Russia in the near future or to invite the Russian president to the country?
- It is certainly possible, but I think that it is necessary to make every effort in the country to solve the Syrian crisis. Now we're losing people every day, but when circumstances improve, then, of course, or I paid a visit to President Putin, or invite him to Damascus.
- In continuation of the Russian theme. You know that Russia opposes U.S. policy and the EU on the Syrian issue. What would happen if Russia will give way to their pressure? Do you allow such a scenario?
- To date, it is important to look at the Russian-American relations, not only through the Syrian crisis, we need a broader view. The difference of positions on the Syrian crisis - just one of the existing contradictions between your countries. With the collapse of the Soviet Union, the United States seemed that Russia destroyed forever. But in the late 1990s with the advent of Vladimir Putin, Russia has gradually gain strength and insistently defend their positions. As a result of a new Cold War for political influence. United States acted on it on several fronts, persistently trying to block Russia's interests in the world.
The U.S. goal - to belittle the role of Russia in the international arena, including by means of pressure on the Syrian issue.
You may ask why Russia supports Syria. And it is very important to explain this point. Russia today is not protecting the president or the government of Bashar al-Assad as the Syrian people can choose any president and any government.
Russia defends the principles that it should be at least a hundred years: the principles of independence and non-interference in the internal affairs of other states. Russia itself has repeatedly suffered from it.
In addition, Russia defends its interests in the region, and it is her right. These interests are not limited to the port of Tartus, for example. Her interests are much deeper: the terrorist strikes on Syria threaten the stability of the entire Middle East. Destabilization here will be reflected on Russia. Guide your country, unlike many leaders of Western countries understand this.
As for the cultural and social situation, we should not forget the thousands of Russian-Syrian families who create cultural, social bridge between the two countries. If Russia were traded, it would have happened a year or two ago, when the political situation was unclear. Today the picture has become absolutely clear to all. Who did not bargain then, there will be traded now.
- Are there any negotiations with Russia for the supply of fuel, goods and weapons? I especially want to ask about the contract to supply S-300 systems - they are delivered to you?
Assad: Of course, no country can claim the existence of certain weapons or sign the contract for their supply - this is part of the secrets of the state and the armed forces.
But I want to say that all the contracts concluded with Russia are carried out. And neither crisis nor pressure from the U.S., Europe and the Gulf countries have not prevented their implementation. Russia supplies Syria's what it takes to protect it and protect its people.
- What kind of help is waiting for Syria from Russia: economic or arms? Syria does not plan to ask for a loan from Russia?
Assad: When national security is weakened, this leads to weakening and economic conditions. And the fact that Russia supplies Syria's military contracts will certainly lead to an improvement of the economic situation in Syria.
Russia's support for our right to assert their independence from the outset helped our economy. A number of states opposing the Syrian people, and inflicted serious damage to our economy, primarily due to the economic blockade, because of which we now suffer. Russia also acted quite differently.
Political support for Russia, and precise execution of military contracts despite U.S. pressure significantly trimmed our economic situation.
And that directly affects the economy - any loan from a friendly country such as Russia, is beneficial for both sides. For Russia it may mean expanding markets and new opportunities for Russian companies, and for Syria - it is an opportunity to raise funds for the development of its own economy.
This is not to mention the already signed contracts with various Russian companies to supply a variety of products.
Once again, I would argue that Russia's political position and its support for Syria's positive effect on the stability and prosperity of the Syrian citizens.
- You can specify the details of the agreement: whether they relate to fuel or food?
Assad: Economic sanctions today are blocking Syrian citizens receive food, medicine and fuel. These are the basic products needed for life. And, accordingly, that the Syrian government is doing now by signing agreements with Russia and other friendly countries, allows software to adjust these products.
- Returning to the Syrian issue - we know that you repeatedly declared amnesty. What are the results? Is there anyone among those amnestied rebels who are fighting in the ranks of government forces?
Assad: Yes, it's true, and amnesty is producing positive results. Especially when the picture of what is happening in Syria has become clear to all.
Many of the rebels laid down their arms and returned to normal life. Many of them went over to the government. These groups are divided into two parts: the first was deceived by the press, the second - those who have been forced under duress to go to the militias because of terrorist threats. Therefore, we always believe that we should leave the door open for those who have decided to go with the road that he went against his country. While many in Syria were opposed amnesty, it paid off and was able to reduce tension in the society.
- Mr President, whom you can call their main allies, but someone - opponents? Syria's relations with some countries in recent collapse - with Qatar and Turkey, and Saudi Arabia. Who is to blame?
Assad- Countries that face us in the world - is Russia and China, and at the regional level - is Iran. But I can say that in the world there is a positive change: some countries that were radically against us, began to change their positions, while others are already restored relations with Syria. And there are countries that do not directly support us.
There are a number of states that supported terrorists in Syria out in the open - it's Qatar and Turkey.
Qatar - sponsor of terrorism, and Turkey trains and provides corridors for them. Now Saudi Arabia has replaced Qatar as a sponsor. Saudi Arabia - a country that has only money, but the one who has the money alone can not create a civilized society and to maintain peace.
If Saudi Arabia acts as the main sponsor, that Turkey has a different position. It is unfortunate that such a state as Turkey, can be controlled by a few dollars. Unfortunately, a vast country with a strategic position and progressive society is controlled by one of the States of the Gulf. Over all this is in the prime minister of Turkey. There is no fault of the Turkish people, with whom we share many of the customs and heritage.
- What's behind the common position of Russia and Syria - only to geopolitical interests or even the similarity of the two nations, which have to contend with the constant threat of terrorism?
Assad-At the Russian-Syrian relations have a lot in common. The first of them - Russia has experienced occupation during the Second World War, and Syria, too, was repeatedly occupied. Second, Russia, like Syria, has suffered from numerous attempts to interfere in its internal affairs. Third - it is terrorism. In Syria we understand that means killing civilians hands of militants in the North Caucasus, know about the hostage-taking in Beslan and the musical "Nord-Ost" in Moscow. Thus, the Russians understand with what we have to do in Syria, because they themselves have experienced terrorism on itself. So when it comes western responsible person who says that there is a bad terrorist, and there are moderate terrorist - the Russians do not believe in it.
There is another similarity between Russia and Syria - is a joint family of which I have previously mentioned. If it were not for the cultural and social and mental similarities, there would be those families that bind the two countries. Add to all this: there are geopolitical interests, which I also mentioned. Instability in Syria and the region as a whole will also affect Russia. She is well aware that he does not understand Europe and the West: The threat of terrorism has no borders. It would be wrong to think that the position of this great state like Russia, is based on one or two principles.
- What do you expect from the conference "Geneva-2"?
Assad: The mission of the Geneva conference - to pave the way for a political solution in Syria. But we can not start a dialogue on the political direction until it stops supporting terrorism abroad. What we expect from Geneva - is putting pressure on those countries that support terrorism in Syria. They need to stop the smuggling of arms and mercenaries, terrorists sent to us. When come to pass this step will be much easier to work on the organization of the political dialogue between all Syrian parties on the future form of government, the law and the Constitution.
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