国際・政治: ずくなしの冷や水


マッティスはISIS 2.0に言及して国際社会を脅している

‘US has no legitimate cards left to play in Syria’
The US presence in Syria is a violation of the law, and a reflection of US frustration said military analyst Kamal Alam. The only way for Washington to be part of the endgame is to keep its forces in the country, he adds.

US Defense Secretary James Mattis said America will not withdraw from Syria, even after the total defeat of ISIS. The announcement came ahead of UN-backed peace talks on the future of the war-torn country.

“You know, the UN said that … basically, we can go after ISIS. And we're there to take them out. But that doesn't mean we just walk away and let ISIS 2.0 pop back around,” the US defense secretary said on Monday.

While Syria continues to insist Washington's intervention is illegal, Mattis claims it is justified. The UN Charter recognizes only two justifications for the use of military force in a foreign country. The first is having the permission of the Security Council, and the second is self-defense.

Kamal Alam: Not at all… In terms of American intervention in Syria, it needs legitimate backing by the Syrian government – it doesn’t have. So as far as international law goes, it is a clear violation. I think it is also a reflection of US frustration. They are more or less locked out of the Syrian war. They don’t have much influence over the end game. By staying in, they want to be some kind of spoiler or at least some kind of minor player toward the war in Syria.

RT: If it is against international law, will there be any ramifications, do you think?

KA: … It depends [on the] Turkish, Iranian and Russian responses to this, because the de-escalation zones in Syria [have been] more or less working over the last few months, and the US is not part of that – same with the Astana process. So they want to be relevant, and they think by being there they will be relevant. Syria can complain to the UN it's within their right. They will have a legal charter as well. So this is an international game going on. The US and some other international bodies accuse Syrians of doing certain things in the war, while Syria, as a sovereign country and the Syrian government as a legitimate government is recognized by the UN – they are within their right to complain and indeed take the US to court over this.

RT: What does America stand to gain from staying in Syria?

KA: They don’t have really many cards left in Syria. Almost everything the US has tried to do has backfired. Of course six years ago, when the war started, backing groups that eventually became terrorists. We’ve seen recently as well – the US has been part of the deal that allowed ISIS to leave Raqqa. And it happened in Deir ez-Zor as well. They need to keep themselves relevant. They no longer have any legitimate cards to play in Syria. So by staying there and keeping forces – that is the only way they can be part of the endgame of the war.
‘Offense to common sense’

Abdo Haddad, a Syrian writer, and political analyst says mentioning “ISIS 2.0”, Secretary Mattis was actually “threatening the international community.”

Commenting on what motives the US has for being in Syria, Haddad said it’s been following the same scenario “starting from Libya, going through Yemen, Syria, and Iraq.”

“There is modus operandi they are using, they are repeating every time, and they should be questioned for it,” he told RT.

“Mr. Mattis…is threatening indirectly…As his boss, Mr. Trump accused and confirmed that Obama and the Clintons have created ISIS – he is promising us to create ISIS 2.0. This is a threat to the international community,” he said.

In his view, the Americans’ presence in Syria “is an occupation” and “colonization.”

“They [the Americans] have no UN Security Council approval, nor UN charter approval, nor an agreement with the Syrian government. As per his statement, Mr. Mattis has many times bluffed his way into politics in our countries. It is an offense to common sense, not only to international laws. It is an offense to common sense,” he said.

“The American presence in Syria is an occupation, or at least colonization. It is a blackmail to get a political return out of it. You cannot destroy a city like Raqqa and then say ‘I am here to establish order, democracy,’ or whatever ‘good things’ they talk about,” Haddad added.

posted by ZUKUNASHI at 01:39| Comment(0) | 国際・政治




War between Iran & Saudi Arabia could send oil to $300 per barrel & impoverish the world
An armed conflict between Riyadh and Tehran would have a major impact on oil markets and the global economy. RT asked experts what a war between the two Middle East superpowers would mean for crude prices.

If a conflict happens, oil prices could increase 500 percent.

“Energy prices will seriously depend on the severity of the conflict. Let's remember the unrecognized Iraqi Kurdistan, which in a state of continuous war exported about 550,000 barrels per day through Turkey. In this connection, we can expect a panic rise in oil price to $150-$200 on the first day of the conflict… If Saudis and Iran attack each other's oil facilities, crude prices can skyrocket to $300,” Mikhail Mashchenko, an analyst at the eToro social network for investors told RT.

Ivan Karyakin, an investment analyst at Global FX, points out that the area of possible conflict pumps a third of global oil. Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Iran, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Oman, and Qatar together produce about 28 million barrels per day, which is slightly less than 30 percent of global production; prices will go up immediately to $150-180 per barrel, he said.

“Then everything will depend on the duration of the conflict. The world market will survive two or three days of the conflict. If the conflict lasts a week, then prices will rise to $200 or higher, and this will have long-term consequences, as stockpiles will decrease,” Karyakin said.

The analyst insists a war between Riyadh and Tehran is unlikely, as it's not in the interests of Russia and China.“Russia is a partner of many conflicting countries in the Middle East. Largest oil importer China, which carries the greatest risks in the event of a rise in oil prices, will use all its influence on Iran and the US to prevent a conflict,” he said.

A war in the Middle East will be very unprofitable for importers, according to Ivan Kapustiansky, Forex Optimum analyst. “In the event of war, markets may lose about 20 percent of the world supply. First of all, of course, the largest importers will be affected. These include the US, China, Japan, as well as the eurozone, in fact, the main locomotives of the world economy,” he said.

Both Saudi Arabia and Iran understand how crucial oil is to their economies, and will try to maintain production even in the event of a conflict, says Andrey Dyachenko, Head of Private Solutions Department of Сastle Family Office in Russia and the CIS. “Even a temporary drop of market share will mean that other players like the US will take their place. And they will not be able to get their market share back. Therefore, if such a conflict does happen, both Saudi Arabia and Iran will do everything possible to continue producing and supplying as much as possible,” he said.
What will happen to the global economy

A sharp jump in oil prices and other hydrocarbons will threaten the stability of the entire global economy, as it will lead to a surge in inflation, warns Dyachenko. “At the time of relatively low growth rates, a significant jump in inflation will lead to the impoverishment of a large part of the world population,” he added.

Both producers and importers will be forced to slash prices to prevent it, according to Dyachenko.
War is unprofitable for both Saudis & Iran

Relations between Riyadh and Tehran have seen worse times than now, assures Petr Pushkarev, Chief Analyst at TeleTrade. The Iranian revolution of 1978-79 and the death of Iranians during the Hajj pilgrimage in 1987, which led to the severing of diplomatic relations between Shia Iran and Sunni Saudi Arabia for three years, were a greater stress test for the countries.

“For the coming years, Saudi Arabia itself is too busy with technological and innovative projects to replace the lost oil revenues. They are not at all ready for full-scale armed conflicts with their neighbors right now, which would be very costly, and very inappropriate at the time when Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman is intensely concentrating power around himself. Perhaps the presence of an external enemy like Iran can suit his purpose, but only in the mediated conflict on the territory of Yemen,” Pushkarev said.

According to eToro's Mikhail Mashchenko, the war is unprofitable for both Saudi Arabia and Iran. "The Saudis, although they feel more confident than their eastern neighbors, have a budget deficit of 10 percent of GDP. Tehran has only begun to increase oil exports after a partial lifting of the sanctions,” he told RT.

Most experts agree a conflict between Saudi Arabia and Iran will be limited to proxy wars like the ones going on in Yemen and Syria. The situation is comparable to the Cold War proxy wars between the United States and the Soviet Union.
posted by ZUKUNASHI at 23:01| Comment(0) | 国際・政治


US Army Fails to Provide Medical Care to Experiment Subject Soldiers
TEHRAN (FNA)- Veterans’ groups said the US Army is withholding crucial information on chemical and biological agents veterans were exposed to in experimentation.

“The Army still has not provided notice to test subject veterans regarding the specific chemical and biological tests to which they were subjected, and their possible health effects,” attorney Ben Patterson of the law firm Morrison and Foerster said, Cetus News reported.

The military conducted these experiments because it wanted to learn how to induce “fear, panic, hysteria and hallucinations” in enemy soldiers, an Army scientist told NPR.

At least 70,000 troops were used in the experiments, a 2015 NPR report found.

Four years after a court ordered the army to disclose pertinent information, the army is dragging its feet “in an apparent attempt to discourage and prevent veterans from applying to the program and receiving the medical care to which they are entitled under the Army's own regulation,” Patterson said.

The army pledged to pay for medical care after thousands of former soldiers won a class action suit against the military over being used in chemical and biological experiments between 1942 and 1975.

The 2009 lawsuit was filed by the Vietnam Veterans of America and other plaintiffs who wanted to know which chemical agents they had been exposed to and what health risks are associated with them.

Still, the Army is not meeting its legal requirements. The Army has not issued broad notifications as per the court ruling, and is still not answering queries about which chemical agents veterans were exposed.

The Army’s requirements for coverage include filling out Department of Defense Form 214 or War Department discharge form, having served as a “research subject” including a US army chemical or biological substance testing program, and having a diagnosed medical condition believed to be a direct result in the experimentation program.

At least 4,000 American troops were exposed to mustard gas during World War II. It wasn’t until the 1990s that the Defense Department declassified those experiments.

Mustard gas causes “blistering of the skin and mucous membranes on contact,”according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and “may increase a person’s risk for lung and respiratory cancer.”

A 2015 PBS investigation found that minorities including African-Americans, Japanese-Americans and Puerto Ricans were singled out for experimentation.
posted by ZUKUNASHI at 20:44| Comment(0) | 国際・政治


Ankara Accuses SDF of Plotting ISIL Terrorists' Withdrawal from Raqqa
TEHRAN (FNA)- Turkish Foreign Ministry said that free withdrawal of ISIL terrorists from the Syrian city of Raqqa is a result of a deal reached between ISIL and the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

Syria's Permanent Mission to the United Nations, on Thursday, reported that it had sent letters saying that SDF had ensured withdrawal of ISIL terrorists from Raqqa and Deir Ezzur, Sputnik reported.

The BBC broadcaster reported that the drivers hired by the SDF were forced to evacuate about 250 ISIL militants and some 3,500 members of their families from Raqqa in a convoy consisting of about 50 trucks, 13 buses and more than 100 vehicles of ISIL itself in October. The militants, including the foreign mercenaries from Azerbaijan, China, Egypt, France, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Turkey and Yemen, had taken from Raqqa everything they could, including weapons and munitions.

"It is an extremely grave and eye-opening revelation that the so-called "Syrian Democratic Forces" dominated by PYD/YPG, the Syrian extension of the terrorist organization PKK, brokered a deal with the terrorist organization ISIL to evacuate a large number of terrorists from Raqqa while the operation to clear ISIL from Raqqa was already underway," the statement said.

According to the ministry, deal sets a new example of the fact that "fighting one terrorist organization with another would eventually result in these terrorist organizations colluding with each other."

Last month, the SDF announced the complete liberation of Raqqa, which was seized by ISIL in 2014 and proclaimed the group’s capital.

Ankara considers the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) to be affiliated with the Kurdistan Worker’s Party (PKK), which is listed as a terror group in Turkey, the United States and the European Union. However, the Democratic Union Party (PYD) and the YPG, as well as the SDF have been receiving support from the United States.

Hundreds of Suspected ISIL Fighters Allowed to Exit Syria's Raqqa, 4 Detained
TEHRAN (FNA)- Hundreds of suspected members of the ISIL terrorist group and thousands of their family members were allowed to flee Raqqa in convoys arranged by US-backed forces in the days before the city fell to coalition forces, Operation Inherent Resolve Spokesman Col. Ryan Dillon told reporters.

Col. Ryan Dillon essentially confirmed a BBC report that 250 ISIL fighters and thousands of family members, along with weapons and other supplies, were disbursed throughout Syria in a series of convoys that were arranged by US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), Sputnik reported.

"In the course of that screening there were four foreign fighters that were identified and detained by the Syrian Democratic Forces," Dillon said, adding, "Out of the rest of the 3,500 civilians that came out of Raqqa at that time, approximately less than 300 were identified and screened as potential ISIL fighters."
posted by ZUKUNASHI at 20:34| Comment(0) | 国際・政治



Turkish President Calls on Russia, US to Pull Troops Out of Syria
TEHRAN (FNA)- Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Russia and the US should pull their troops out of Syria following the joint statement adopted by the two countries’ presidents Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump, which says that there is no military solution to the Syrian conflict.

"It is hard for me to understand such statements. If a military solution cannot help find a way out of the crisis, then those who think so should pull their troops out of Syria," the Turkish leader said, as cited by the Haberturk TV channel.

Putin and Trump adopted a joint statement on Syria on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Vietnam’s Da Nang on November 11.

According to the document, "the presidents agreed that there is no military solution to the conflict in Syria."

"They confirmed that the ultimate political solution to the conflict must be forged through the Geneva process pursuant to UNSCR [United Nations Security Council Resolution] 2254," the document read.

Putin and Trump "also took note of President Assad’s recent commitment to the Geneva process and constitutional reform and elections as called for under UNSCR 2254."

According to the joint statement, the two leaders "affirmed that these steps must include full implementation of UNSCR 2254, including constitutional reform and free and fair elections under UN supervision, held to the highest international standards of transparency, with all Syrians, including members of the diaspora, eligible to participate."
posted by ZUKUNASHI at 01:23| Comment(0) | 国際・政治



Qatar Claims It's 'A Thousand Times Better off' without Former Allies
TEHRAN (FNA)- Qatar’s emir proclaimed that his country is “better off” without the Persian Gulf states like Saudi Arabia and UAE that imposed a boycott against Doha this year.

During his speech at the Shura Council, Qatar’s upper house of parliament, Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani has declared that his country is "a thousand times better off" without the former allies that turned against it, TASS reported.

"We do not fear the boycott of these countries against us, we are a thousand times better off without them," the emir said, adding however that "vigilance is required."

He also added that Qatar’s government is working on "introducing a number of food security projects" and pays "special attention to water security" in order to ensure the country’s future without the support of its former allies.

Back in June, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) imposed a trade and diplomatic embargo on Qatar, accusing Doha of supporting terrorism, an allegation strongly denied by the emirate.

Qatar: Saudi-Led Bloc Not Interested in Resolving Diplomatic Crisis
TEHRAN (FNA)- The Qatari emir said the Saudi-led bloc of countries that have brought his country under a full-scale embargo is not interested in finding a solution to the Persian Gulf diplomatic crisis, stressing that Doha is open to “dialog based on mutual respect.”

“We express our readiness for a compromise within the framework of a dialogue based on mutual respect for sovereignty and common obligations,” Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani told members of Qatar’s consultative Shoura Council, presstv reported.

Sheikh Tamim, added, however, that “we recognize the indicators that come from the blockade states show they do not want to reach a solution.”

Back in June, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) imposed a trade and diplomatic embargo on Qatar, accusing Doha of supporting terrorism, an allegation strongly denied by the emirate.

The Saudi-led bloc presented Qatar with a list of demands, among them downgrading ties with Iran, and gave it an ultimatum to comply with them or face consequences. Doha, however, refused to meet the demands and said that they were meant to force the country to surrender its sovereignty.

The Qatari monarch said, “Foreign countries repeatedly asked the blockaders about the reason behind their claims, but they could not give them anything.”

The Qatar monarch further emphasized the country’s determination to stand against pressure, adding, “We are not afraid of the siege. We do not need the countries laying it.”

He thanked the Qatari people for resisting the “ruthless” blockade, saying the people were capable and aware enough to stand on their own feet.

Tamim also accused the foursome of trying to prevent his country from hosting World Cup in 2022, as the emirate has been chosen to do.

“The blockading countries have sought to deprive Qatar of [the right to] host the World Cup by exercising pressure and circulating lies,” he said.

Earlier this month, the Intercept, a US-based investigative website, reported that documents found in an e-mail account belonging to Yousef al-Otaiba, the UAE’s envoy to the US, has exposed a plot by Abu Dhabi to wage an economic war on Qatar.

After Qatar was brought to its knees, the UAE would start a propaganda campaign to portray Doha as incapable of hosting the World Cup, the report said.

posted by ZUKUNASHI at 01:15| Comment(0) | 国際・政治


Advisor to Lebanese President: Hariri's Resignation Due to Opposition to US Plots
TEHRAN (FNA)- A senior advisor to Lebanese President Michel Aoun said that Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri resigned after rejecting a US plot against his country.

"A message was received from outside Lebanon that showed a number of influential people in the US administration wanted to hit a blow to Lebanon, but Saad Hariri voiced clear opposition to it and his opposition has cost him the present situation that has been enforced since last Saturday," John Aziz told al-Mayadeen news channel on Monday night.

He added that the Lebanese' unity and firm position in support of Hariri changed the Americans' stances and forced them to withdraw from their plots.

Aoun said on Saturday Hariri, who announced his resignation in a broadcast from Saudi Arabia, has been “kidnapped” and must have immunity.

Aoun made the remarks in a meeting with foreign ambassadors in the capital Beirut, a senior unnamed Lebanese official said on Saturday.

Meanwhile, in a statement released by Aoun's office on Saturday, the Lebanese president expressed concern over Hariri's situation and said the premier was living in a “dubious” situation in Saudi Arabia. He added that anything Hariri has said or may say “does not reflect reality” due to the mystery of his situation.

Any stance or move by Hariri “is the result of the dubious and mysterious situation that he is living in the kingdom,” Aoun added.

Aoun further called on Riyadh to clarify why Hariri hasn't returned home since announcing his resignation in the kingdom last week.

“Lebanon does not accept its prime minister being in a situation at odds with international treaties and the standard rules in relations between states,” he said.

He added that a marathon planned in Beirut on Sunday in which tens of thousands are expected to participate should be “a national sports demonstration for solidarity with Prime Minister Hariri and his return to his country.”

Meanwhile, the Arabic-language al-Joumhouria (The Republic) daily newspaper quoted Aoun as saying on Saturday that Beirut would refer Hariri’s case to the UN Security Council within a week if his destiny remains unclear.

Hariri announced his resignation on November 4, citing several reasons, including the security situation in Lebanon, for his sudden decision. He also said that he realized a plot being hatched against his life.

Hariri also accused Iran and the Lebanese resistance movement, Hezbollah, of meddling in the Arab countries’ affairs; an allegation the two have rejected.

The Lebanese prime minister announced his resignation following visits to Saudi Arabia.

The resignation also comes less than a month after he announced plans to join a coalition government with Hezbollah.

Many authorities in Lebanon have insisted on the return of Hariri from Saudi Arabia. Several sources believe that Saudi Arabia is holding Hariri against his will, a claim the kingdom has rejected.

TEHRAN (FNA)- A Lebanese newspaper said it has gained access to a secret letter sent by Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman which includes proposals and issues related to establishment of relations with Israel.

The Arabic-language al-Akhbar daily revealed the document for the first time on Tuesday.

The document discloses all events that have happened since US President Donald Trump's recent visit to Saudi Arabia and Washington's attempts to mediate endorsement of a peace agreement between Riyadh and Tel Aviv.

It also includes information about the Saudi and Israeli officials' visits to Tel Aviv and Riyadh.

"Saudi Arabia's closeness to Israel entails a risk for the kingdom. We will not do so unless we feel an honest American trend in opposition to Iran, which is destabilizing the region," a part of the long letter said.

In addition, the principles of the Israeli-Palestinian peace plan concocted by the Saudis were laid out. As part of the plan, the Saudi kingdom demanded military equilibrium with Israel, Israel's help in stopping Iranian overtures on the Middle East and turning Jerusalem into a city governed by international rule, according to al-Akhbar.

In relevant remarks in June, Saudi whistle-blower Mujtahid, who is believed to be a member of or have a well-connected source in the royal family, revealed that bin Salman is attempting to pave the ground for overt relations with Israel.

"In line with preparing the public opinion to establish open ties with Israel, bin Salman has launched a media and twitter campaign and gifts any twitter activist or reporter who helps him in this regard," Mujtahid wrote on his twitter page.

Also in the same month, a leading Arab daily disclosed secret meetings between bin Salman and Israeli officials in the past two years.

Al-Qods al-Arabi newspaper reported that the Israeli media have all voiced pleasure in Mohammed bin Salman's appointment as the crown prince, adding that this development has long been wished by the Israelis.

The Arab daily quoted the Israeli newspaper Yediot Aharonot as reporting that the intelligence sources have confirmed that bin Salman has held meetings with the Israeli officials under a secret name, Walad, in the past two years.

The Israeli daily didn’t reveal the venues and time for the meetings, but wrote that Israel and Saudi Arabia have common foes, friends and interests.
posted by ZUKUNASHI at 00:58| Comment(0) | 国際・政治


Russia: US Directly Supports ISIL Terrorists in Syria
TEHRAN (FNA)- The Russian Defense Ministry said it has obtained evidence the US-led coalition provides support for the ISIL terrorist group in Syria.

"The Albu Kamal liberation operation conducted by the Syrian government army, supported by the Russian Aerospace Force at the end of the last week, revealed facts of direct cooperation and support for ISIL terrorists by the US-led ‘international coalition,’" the Russian Defense Ministry said, Sputnik reported.

The ministry showed photo shoots made by Russian unmanned aircraft on November 9 which show kilometers-long convoys of ISIL armed groups leaving Albu Kamal towards the Wadi es-Sabha passage on the Syrian-Iraqi border to avoid strikes by the Russian aviation and the government army.

The US refused to conduct airstrikes over the leaving ISIL convoy.

"Americans peremptorily rejected to conduct airstrikes over the ISIL terrorists on the pretext of the fact that, according to their information, militants are yielding themselves prisoners to them and now are subject to the provisions of the Convention relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War," the Russian Defense Ministry said.

The Defense Ministry specified that "the Russian force grouping command twice addressed the command of the US-led ‘international coalition’ with a proposal to carry out joint actions to destroy the retreating ISIL convoys on the Eastern bank of the Euphrates River."

The Americans failed to answer the Russian side’s question on why ISIL militants leaving in combat vehicles heavily equipped are regrouping in the area controlled by the international coalition to conduct new strikes over the Syrian army near Albu Kamal, the Russian Defense Ministry stressed.

The ministry also said that the coalition’s aviation tried to disturb Russia’s Aerospace Forces near Albu Kamal to ensure safe exit of terrorists.

"The coalition’s aviation tried to create obstacles for the aircraft of the Russian Aerospace Forces in this area to safely shield militants of the ISIL , who are leaving Albu Kamal, from the strikes of government forces," the ministry said. To this aim, the coalition’s attack aircraft entered the airspace over the 15-km zone around the city to hamper the Russian aircraft’ mission, it said.

According to the Defense Ministry, the United States provided cover for Islamic State militants to use them in attempts to attain its own aims in the Middle East.

"There is indisputable evidence that the United States pretends it is waging irreconcilable struggle against international terrorism in front of the international community, while in reality it provides cover for the combat-ready ISIL terrorists to let them regain strength, regroup themselves and advance US interests in the Middle East," the ministry said.
posted by ZUKUNASHI at 00:33| Comment(0) | 国際・政治



Hundreds of ISIS corpses kept in Libya’s makeshift morgue since 2016 – report
Hundreds of corpses of slain Islamic State militants have been kept in refrigerated containers in an improvised morgue in Misrata, Libya since December of last year, still awaiting a decision on their fate.

Around 700 bodies have been kept inside multiple containers in Misrata at temperatures low enough to prevent decomposition, AFP reveals. The improvised morgue has housed slain jihadists since December 2016, when Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) was driven out of the coastal city of Sirte – the jihadists’ last bastion in Libya.

The corpses are stored in numbered and classified bags, and each body has a file and DNA sample, which allows their nationalities to be identified. Most of the dead bodies belong to foreign fighters who came from abroad to fight alongside IS, which previously recruited large numbers of foot soldiers from Africa’s poorest countries.

“We don’t know if countries have contacted [Libya’s] prosecutor general to recover the bodies of their nationals, but as far as we’re concerned nobody’s come here to try to identify the bodies,” Ali Tuwaileb, a man in charge of the facility, told AFP.

Tuwaileb said all the files were handed over to the prosecutor general’s office in Tripoli to decide where the bodies would be buried. The corpses are mainly of Tunisians, Egyptians, Sudanese, and some Libyans, but so far, no families have come to claim them.

The makeshift morgue is in urgent need of equipment required to store and identify the bodies, Tuwaileb said. There are two old stretchers under a tent that serves as a forensic lab.

“As you can see, we don’t have the means. This is where we took samples for DNA tests and where we photographed the corpses,” Tuwaileb said. Hundreds of other Islamists were abandoned under the rubble in Sirte or in improvised graveyards dug by the terrorists themselves.

According to Tuwaileb, between 1,500 and 2,000 jihadists were buried in Sirte, but the presence of bodies decaying in the open provoked fears of epidemics among locals. “We don’t have enough fridges, or we would have exhumed all the bodies,” he said. He added that the containers were borrowed from private companies.

But even private contributions fail to make much difference, as three out of the seven refrigerated containers in Misrata have broken down. “We’ve had to redistribute the bodies among the fridges that still work,” Tuwaileb explained. He said there is a constant shortage of electricity needed to keep the refrigerators running, especially in the summer heat. “So a backup has to be ready and we have to refuel it regularly,” he said.

“In the meantime, the bodies will stay here,” Tuwaileb said, adding that some of the companies who lent out the refrigerated containers want them back. “Every time I tell them they can take the fridges if they want, but with the contents.”

Islamic State fighters have now been almost completely driven out by troops of Libya’s new UN-backed government, which launched an offensive in May.

However, some regional leaders believe the battle against IS is far from over in Libya. Last week, Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi warned that the defeat of Islamic State in Iraq and Syria was likely to have forced militants to seek safe haven in Libya, AP reports.

According to him, they could later cross into his country, where security forces have been battling militants on the Sinai Peninsula.
posted by ZUKUNASHI at 23:38| Comment(0) | 国際・政治


Israel will continue 'acting in Syria', Netanyahu tells US & Russia

Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu says he has made clear to the US and Russia that Tel Aviv will continue to "act in Syria." It comes after Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin reaffirmed joint efforts to support a ceasefire in the Syrian region bordering Israel and Jordan.

"We are controlling our borders, we are protecting our country and we will continue to do so," Netanyahu said in remarks to members of his right-wing Likud party Monday, as quoted by Reuters. "I have also informed our friends, firstly in Washington and also our friends in Moscow, that Israel will act in Syria, including in southern Syria, according to our understanding and according to our security needs."

His comments come after Trump and Putin released a joint statement Saturday, stating that Washington and Moscow had reaffirmed their joint efforts to stabilize Syria as its civil war continues to abate. This includes the expansion of a truce in the southwestern Syrian region which borders Israel and Jordan.

Netanyahu's remarks follow that of the country's regional cooperation minister Tzachi Hanegbi, who expressed similar sentiment a day earlier. Israel has "set red lines and will stand firm on this," he said Sunday.

Tel Aviv has been pushing Washington and Moscow to deny Iran, Hezbollah, and Shia militias any permanent bases in Syria, and to keep them away from the border with the Golan Heights. It comes as Damascus aligned forces gain ground while helping the Syrian government battle the Sunni-led rebels.

Meanwhile, a US government official said Monday that Russia agreed "to work with the Syrian regime to remove Iranian-backed forces to a defined distance" from the Golan Heights border with Israel. The distance would range from as little as 5-7 kilometers (3-4 miles) to around 30 kilometers (18 miles), depending on current rebel positions in the Syrian controlled area of the Golan Heights, the official told Reuters on condition of anonymity. An Israeli official, briefed on the situation, said the move is aimed at keeping rival factions away from each other, but would also keep Iranian-linked forces away from the Israeli side of the disputed Golan Heights.

Israel's military says it has carried out around 100 strikes in Syria. Those have targeted suspected Hezbollah or Iranian arms depots, or have been in retaliation for shelling from the Syrian-held Golan Heights.
posted by ZUKUNASHI at 22:15| Comment(0) | 国際・政治


‘Bombs were falling like rain’: ISIS wives & kids talk about life under ‘caliphate‘
Women and children who managed to escape Islamic State shared with RT the harrowing stories of what they lived through, shedding light on the “caliphate’s” rules, imprisonment and the losses they endured.

RT’s Murad Gazdiev spoke to some of the 19 Russian speaking women and 26 children who found themselves in the Syrian port city of Latakia. They had fled from all over the country, but mainly from the cities that were long held by the Islamic State (IS, also known as ISIS/ISIL).

They managed to flee when the grip of IS weakened on Raqqa, Deir ez-Zor and Mayadin. They told RT that Syrian Kurds helped them escape and contacted the Russian authorities. Many of the women claim they had been simply following their terrorist husbands along an ill-fated route. “From the very beginning I wanted to leave Syria. But I didn’t know how,” a woman with a toddler in her arms told RT, “Then I ran away from my husband and tried to reach the Kurds in Raqqa. They helped me.”

Another woman told RT that she wanted to flee Islamic State together with her husband. Apparently, it didn't work out with him, as he is still in the ‘caliphate.’ “It was dangerous to flee directly. For three or four months we were trying to find a way out of Syria. My husband wanted to escape as well. But it’s impossible for him,” she said.

Another ‘ISIS wife,’ who used to live in the city of Mayadin in eastern Syria, was clearly disappointed with the rules of the ‘caliphate.’ “There never was any civilization, no economy like it was always described. There were only [Islamic] courts and only if you [have] a high rank, they are on your side. Otherwise you are nothing,” she said. “Bombs were falling on us like rain.” She then shared a harrowing story of what she lived through: “I happened to be buried under the rubble four times with my child.”

A teenage boy is among those who escaped the terrors of Islamic State. He told RT his family attempted to flee IS on several occasions. “When we first tried to flee, IS police caught and imprisoned us. In total we were taken to prison on three separate occasions,” the boy said. His father, an alleged Islamic state fighter, was once detained and one day the boy was told that he didn’t make it. “The last time they didn't release my father and afterwards they said he died. It was horrible. IS was hunting us, plus we had to deal with air bombardments,” he recalled. It’s not clear where the boy’s mother is and whether she is among the women in the RT video.

The issue of ISIS wives returning home remains contentious. Some argue that these women should be given a chance to rehabilitate and “repent for their crimes” or taken to court. “Certainly the wives and children are innocent victims in this play,” British political commentator Mo Ansar told RT in September.

“The answer is not disenfranchising them and making them stateless. All that is going to do is increase the number of people who are going to be turning to terror as a way of retribution towards the West.”

However, Andre Walker, a political commentator for the New York Observer, believes that these women de facto joined a terrorist organization and should be punished accordingly. “These are people who are dangerous extremist terrorists. All of our countries should support Syria and Iraq in ensuring that these people are properly prosecuted and brought to justice,” he said.
posted by ZUKUNASHI at 22:04| Comment(0) | 国際・政治

The Saudis have understood that they are mistaken

Lebanese Analyst: Hariri's Interview after Resignation Indicates Riyadh's Withdrawal
TEHRAN (FNA)- A prominent Lebanese analyst underlined that the recent interview of Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri with the al-Mustaqbal TV after his resignation in Saudi Arabia shows that Riyadh has retreated from its position under international pressures.

"The first conclusion from al-Hariri's interview is that it shows the start of Saudi Arabia's withdrawal under international pressures and I believe that it would not happen if the Lebanese officials and people weren’t united in displaying opposition to his detention in Saudi Arabia," Ali Morad, a political writer and analyst, told FNA on Monday.

"The Saudis have understood that they are mistaken and the result of what they did was against what was predicted," he added.

Morad also expressed confidence that Saudi Arabia has detained Hariri in coordination with Washington, given the fact that US President Donald Trump has approved of the Saudis' measures in his tweets.

Lebanese President Michel Aoun said on Saturday Hariri, who announced his resignation in a broadcast from Saudi Arabia, has been “kidnapped” and must have immunity.

Aoun made the remarks in a meeting with foreign ambassadors in the capital Beirut, a senior unnamed Lebanese official said on Saturday.

Meanwhile, in a statement released by Aoun's office on Saturday, the Lebanese president expressed concern over Hariri's situation and said the premier was living in a “dubious” situation in Saudi Arabia. He added that anything Hariri has said or may say “does not reflect reality” due to the mystery of his situation.

Any stance or move by Hariri “is the result of the dubious and mysterious situation that he is living in the kingdom,” Aoun added.

Aoun further called on Riyadh to clarify why Hariri hasn't returned home since announcing his resignation in the kingdom last week.

“Lebanon does not accept its prime minister being in a situation at odds with international treaties and the standard rules in relations between states,” he said.

He added that a marathon planned in Beirut on Sunday in which tens of thousands are expected to participate should be “a national sports demonstration for solidarity with Prime Minister Hariri and his return to his country.”

Meanwhile, the Arabic-language al-Joumhouria (The Republic) daily newspaper quoted Aoun as saying on Saturday that Beirut would refer Hariri’s case to the UN Security Council within a week if his destiny remains unclear.

Hariri announced his resignation on November 4, citing several reasons, including the security situation in Lebanon, for his sudden decision. He also said that he realized a plot being hatched against his life.

Hariri also accused Iran and the Lebanese resistance movement, Hezbollah, of meddling in the Arab countries’ affairs; an allegation the two have rejected.

The Lebanese prime minister announced his resignation following visits to Saudi Arabia.

The resignation also comes less than a month after he announced plans to join a coalition government with Hezbollah.

Many authorities in Lebanon have insisted on the return of Hariri from Saudi Arabia. Several sources believe that Saudi Arabia is holding Hariri against his will, a claim the kingdom has rejected.
posted by ZUKUNASHI at 02:37| Comment(0) | 国際・政治

Data: US Drug Crisis Kills More Americans Than Wars

Data: US Drug Crisis Kills More Americans Than Wars
TEHRAN (FNA)- Opioid drug abuse killed more Americans than the US wars in Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan combined, highlighting the growing opioid crisis in the United States, according to government data.

US war veterans are twice as likely as non-veterans to die from drug addiction, particularly those who served in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), World News reported.

US government and healthcare officials have been struggling to stem the epidemic of overdoses, which killed more than 64,000 Americans last year alone, up from 52,000 the previous year. More than half were related to opioids.

US President Donald Trump declared the opioid crisis a “public health emergency” last month, describing the epidemic as a "national shame" and "human tragedy."

The declaration will redirect federal resources and loosen regulations to combat a drug epidemic that kills more than 150 Americans every day.

But the announcement disappointed some experts and advocates in the field of drug addiction, who said it was inadequate to fight a growing crisis that kills more than a 100 Americans daily.

“Our veterans deserve better than polished sound bites and empty promises,” according to former Democratic Congressman Patrick Kennedy, a recovering drug addict and a member of Trump’s opioid commission, as well as the nephew of former US President John F. Kennedy.

One effort to address the issue has stalled in Congress, a measure sponsored by Senator John McCain, one of the nation’s most visible veterans. The bill is aimed at researching ways to help doctors at the US Department of Veterans Affairs rely less on opioids in treating chronic pain.

McCain, who fought in the Vietnam War, noted that 20 veterans take their lives each day, a suicide rate 21 percent higher than for other American adults.

Health experts have warned that the opioid crisis in the United States may spread to Europe.

Europe's overdose deaths rose for the third consecutive year in 2015 to 8,441 and 81 percent of them were related to opioids, which include heroin.
posted by ZUKUNASHI at 02:27| Comment(0) | 国際・政治


Saudi Arabia agrees to lift blockade on Yemen as children face starvation & cholera
As children in war-torn Yemen continue to face severe malnutrition and a deadly cholera outbreak, Saudi Arabia has agreed to reopen air and sea ports following a week-long blockade. RT has met with children affected by the dire situation.

Riyadh's decision, announced earlier on Monday, comes four days after the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) said that nearly 400,000 children in Yemen are "at risk of death from severe acute malnutrition." Children are also facing a deadly cholera outbreak, with 50 percent of the cases belonging to those under the age of 15.

The UN and over 20 aid groups warned the blockade – imposed on November 6 – could make things worse in the war-torn country. "The humanitarian situation in Yemen is extremely fragile and any disruption in the pipeline of critical supplies such as food, fuel and medicines has the potential to bring millions of people closer to starvation and death," the organizations wrote last week.

RT Arabic spoke with two young brothers who have felt the severe impact of the ongoing civil war and the blockade. Forced to quit school, the children now rummage through trash bins looking for tin cans which can bring their family a little bit of money. "We are taking care of our family...we collect cans to buy food and pay the rent, and to feed all our family," the older brother said.

However, the blockade will now be lifted. "The first step in this process will be taken within 24 hours and involves reopening all the ports in areas controlled by [Yemen’s internationally recognized government, which the coalition backs],” the Saudi mission at the UN said on Monday, as quoted by AP.

The ports referred to by the mission are located in Aden, Mocha and Mukalla. The mission says it has asked the UN to provide a team of experts to determine ways to prevent weapons from being smuggled in.

Yet, Abdu Ilahi al-Harazi from the Special Hospitals Union said that civilians should never be deprived of necessities simply because Riyadh is worried about weapons coming into the country. "Food and medicine are not weapons, they're things that have nothing to do with weapons. They shouldn't be manipulated," he said.

The chair of the Islamic Human Rights Commission, Massoud Shadjareh, echoed that sentiment. "There is no logical reason that we couldn't...take medicine and deal with the issue of cholera. There is no logical reason that we couldn't...give food and support to those who are starving...the only thing that is holding us back is the fact that the Saudis and their allies, with the help and support of the United States and the West, are putting very effective...blockade which no food, no medicine gets through," he said.

The Saudi-led coalition, which is backed by the US, launched an aerial campaign against Shiite Houthi rebels in March 2015, and later began a ground operation. The coalition is allied to Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi, who fled to Saudi Arabia when the Houthis took power in Yemen. According to the latest UN figures, the conflict has so far led to the deaths of over 5,000 civilians. More than 8,500 people have been injured in the ongoing fighting.
posted by ZUKUNASHI at 01:25| Comment(0) | 国際・政治



Drone Footage Reveals Mosul Devastation
TEHRAN (FNA)- Drone footage from Western Mosul’s hospital district shows the extent of destruction that the city suffered during the nine months it was under siege from ISIL. Iraqi forces pushed militants out of the city after a grueling battle that ended in July. Thousands of civilians are believed to have been killed, and entire neighborhoods were turned into wastelands of rubble during the campaign. [VIDEO]

posted by ZUKUNASHI at 14:12| Comment(0) | 国際・政治


Damascus denounces US-led coalition for adding ‘new bloody massacres’ to their ‘war crimes record’
President Bashar Assad’s government has once again condemned the indiscriminate bombardment by the US-led coalition which continues to kill civilians and destroy the country’s infrastructure, while at the same time, hampering Damascus’ anti-terrorist efforts.
Syria war

The Syrian government expresses “strong condemnation” of the ongoing attacks against civilians carried out as part of US-led Operation Inherent Resolve, the Permanent Mission of the Syrian Arab Republic to the UN said in its latest communication addressed to the UN Secretary-General and the President of the Security Council.

Syria accused the “rogue coalition” of adding “new bloody massacres” to their records of “war crimes and crimes against humanity.”

The letter stated that just this Saturday, the US-led coalition was operating in residential areas in the al-Duwaiji village, Deir ez-Zor, killing 10 civilians, wounding “scores,” and causing “massive material damage” to local civilian infrastructure. It further claimed that coalition jets targeted a paramedic vehicle on its way to help the injured, killing everyone inside.

Damascus is further dismayed and alarmed over countries who claim to be vigilant about the rule of law and human rights turning a blind eye to the “massacres” being committed in Raqqa and Deir ez-Zor, SANA reported, citing the contents of the letters.

As troops of the so-called Syrian Democratic Force (SDF) continue their US-led military operation in the northeast of the country, the Syrian government remains firm in their “suspicion” that the US-led bombing campaign, and its support for opposition groups on the ground, are coordinated campaigns to help Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) terrorists attack government forces. The letters noted that IS attacks on government positions continue to come from areas where the US coalition’s proxy forces are deployed.

Furthermore, Syria believes that the ongoing airstrikes are aimed at derailing the Syrian Army’s progress against IS terrorists. The Syrian government called on the UN to take “immediate” action to “stop the brutal crimes perpetrated by the illegal 'coalition’... And to prevent further crimes and attacks on the Syrian people as well as [on] the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Syria.”

posted by ZUKUNASHI at 12:22| Comment(0) | 国際・政治


Remember the time Boris Johnson praised Libya’s coastguard? He may be regretting it..






















Translated by EVITA

どうやって、目をそらすことができますか?  地中海難民危機




Khan & Corbyn call for Boris Johnson to be sacked over diplomatic gaffes
posted by ZUKUNASHI at 09:21| Comment(0) | 国際・政治

Arab Media: Barzani Seeking to Mend Ties with Iran, Worrying US

TEHRAN (FNA)- A leading Lebanese newspaper reported that Washington is concerned about former Iraqi Kurdistan region President Massoud Barzani's possible rapprochement with Tehran.

The Arabic-language al-Akhbar newspaper quoted a source in the US embassy in Baghdad as saying that the American officials are aware and concerned of the secret letters sent by Barzani to the Commander of the Quds Force of Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Major General Qassem Soleimani.

The US official didn’t reveal the contents of the letter, but meantime, said that Tehran may accept Barzani's repeated apologies and agree to mediate between Baghdad and Erbil to resolve the problems after the illegal independence referendum in the Iraqi Kurdistan region.

Earlier this month, the Arab daily had also quoted the leader of Hezbollah al-Nujaba, a major Iraqi Shiite resistance movement fighting the ISIL, as saying that General Soleimani's talks with different Kurdish sides prevented clashes and bloodshed in Iraq after the referendum in the Iraqi Kurdistan region.

"The Islamic Republic of Iran's efforts to resolve the issue (the problems after the referendum) and the presence of General Qassem Soleimani and his talks with all sides led to important achievements and peaceful settlement of problems, prevented bloodshed and kept safe the Iraqi people of all ethnic groups," Sheikh Akram al-Kaabi said.

He also explained about the Iraqi army and popular forces' operations to take back Kirkuk after the independence referendum in the Iraqi Kurdistan region, and said that the Peshmerga forces helped them and the former gained control over the region peacefully.

Al-Kaabi also blasted Barzani for betraying Kurds and implementing the US and Israeli plots.

Also, last month, Representative of the KRG in Tehran Nazim Dabagh revealed that General Soleimani had warned the Kurdish officials of the consequences of the independence referendum.

"Mr. Soleimani headed meetings with local delegations (in Iraqi Kurdistan region). Mr. Soleimani also had several private meetings with Mr. Massoud Barzani, the president, and Nechirvan Barzani, the prime minister of the Iraqi Kurdistan region and the leaders of other parties, including Change (Goran) party," Dabaqh said.

He added that the Iranian side had warned the Kurds not to hold an independence referendum because all powers will stand united against the Iraqi Kurdistan region.

According to Dabaqh, the Iranian side also told the KRG officials and Kurdish groups that Tehran wants the Iraqi Kurds' achievements to be maintained within the framework of the Iraqi constitution.

He lauded General Soleimani and other Iranian officials' efforts to help the Kurds, and said, "We always need relations and friendship of Iran."

Also last month, Dabagh announced that the Kurdish leaders are now ready to resolve the problems created after the independence referendum through talks, lauding efforts made by General Soleimani to this end.

"Mr. Soleimani is the one who has really treated the Iraqi Kurds honestly and he had issued warnings about (consequences of) holding the referendum in the Iraqi Kurdistan region before it was held," Dabbagh said.

"It seems that the Islamic Republic of Iran seeks to resolve the problems between the Kurdistan region and the central government in Iraq based on the Iraqi constitution and we assess Iran's measures in this regard as positive," he said.

Meantime, a senior Kurdish Iraqi legislator praised General Soleimani for his mediatory role which led to the settlement of problems after the September 25 independence referendum in the Iraqi Kurdistan region.

"Recently, after holding the referendum, a 9-article agreement was signed between Hashd al-Shaabi (Iraqi Popular forces) Commander Hadi al-Ameri and Bafel Talabani, a commander of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) (and son of late Jalal Talabani), under the supervision of Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and mediated by Qassem Soleimani, the IRGC Quds Force commander, based on which the referendum results were called off until an unspecified time," Massoud Haider wrote on his facebook, Russian news agency Sputnik reported.

Other Kurdish lawmakers were also quoted by Reuters as saying that General Soleimani met leaders from the PUK, one of the two main Kurdish political parties in Iraq and an ally of Tehran, in the city of Sulaimania the day before Premier al-Abadi ordered his forces to advance on Kirkuk.

Reuters reported that General Soleimani told the Kurdish leaders that their Peshmerga forces would not be able to beat Abadi's troops, which had backing from the West and regional powers Iran and Turkey.

"Soleimani's visit...was to give a last-minute chance for the decision makers not to commit a fatal mistake," Reuters quoted one PUK lawmaker as saying.

Ala Talabani, a leading PUK official, said the Iranian General only provided what she described as "wise" counsel in his meetings with Kurdish leaders.

"Soleimani advised us ... that Kirkuk should return to the law and the constitution, so let us come to an understanding," she said on the Arabic language TV station al-Hadath.
posted by ZUKUNASHI at 01:09| Comment(0) | 国際・政治

Algerian PM: Arab States Spent $130bln to Destroy Syria,

Algerian PM: Arab States Spent $130bln to Destroy Syria, Libya, Yemen
TEHRAN (FNA)- Algerian Prime Minister Ahmed Ouyahia said some regional Arab states have spent $130 billion to obliterate Syria, Libya and Yemen.

Ouyahia made the remarks on Saturday at a time when much of the Middle East and North Africa is in turmoil, grappling with different crises, ranging from terrorism and insecurity to political uncertainty and foreign interference, presstv reported.

Algeria maintains that regional states should settle their differences through dialog and that foreign meddling is to their detriment.

Syria has been gripped by foreign-sponsored militancy since 2011. Takfirism, which is a trademark of many terrorist groups operating in Syria, is largely influenced by Wahhabism, the radical ideology dominating Saudi Arabia.

Libya has further been struggling with violence and political uncertainty since the country’s former ruler Muammar Gaddafi was deposed in 2011 and later killed in the wake of a US-led NATO military intervention. Daesh has been taking advantage of the chaos in Libya to increase its presence there.

Yemen has also witnessed a deadly Saudi war since March 2015 which has led to a humanitarian crisis.

Last Month, Qatar's former deputy prime minister Abdullah bin Hamad al-Attiyah said the United Arab Emirates had planned a military invasion of Qatar with thousands of US-trained mercenaries.

The UAE plan for the military action was prepared before the ongoing Qatar rift, but it was never carried out as Washington did not give the green light to it, he noted.

In late April, reports said the UAE was quietly expanding its military presence into Africa and the Middle East, namely in Eritrea and Yemen.

posted by ZUKUNASHI at 01:03| Comment(0) | 国際・政治

シリア危機に軍事的解決はない プーチン・トランプ声明

‘No military solution to Syrian crisis’: Putin & Trump in joint statement
The Syrian conflict “does not have a military solution,” the Russian and US presidents agreed, according to a written statement issued on the sidelines of the APEC summit. The document was released as both nations are at odds on a number of international issues.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and his US counterpart Donald Trump stressed that a settlement of the Syrian conflict must be reached through the Geneva peace process. Moscow and Washington also reiterated their commitment to the territorial integrity and sovereignty of the war-torn state.

“The presidents agreed that there is no military solution to the conflict in Syria. They confirmed that the ultimate political solution to the conflict must be found through the Geneva process in accordance with the UN Security Council resolution 2254,” the statement reads.

The leaders also gave the green light “to support the existing military communication channels” to enhance the security of US and Russian forces fighting Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) terrorists in Syria.

The Russian leader says the statement is “very important” as it stresses “key issues,” including the struggle against terrorism, which is important for both Moscow and Washington, as well as the entire international community.

The fight against terrorism “is extremely important for the United States, especially in light of recent tragic events that occurred there,” Putin said. “It is important for us, a country that has long been facing this problem, and it's important for the entire international community.” Trump also welcomed the agreement, saying “it’s going to save tremendous numbers of lives,” and that it was reached “very quickly.”

The joint agreement was worked out in advance by officials from both nations, and agreed upon by Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Russian news agencies report, citing Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov.

Just two days before the key statement on Syria was issued, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said that Trump and Putin have nothing “sufficiently substantive to talk about” at the moment. Relations between Moscow and Washington are currently at the “lowest point” since the Cold War.

World leaders gathered in Da Nang, Vietnam for the 25th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) international summit. The joint statement had been specifically prepared for the respective gathering, Peskov said.

An official meeting between Putin and Trump on the sidelines of the summit was considered by both sides, but was decided against at the last moment. The White House cited “scheduling conflicts” as a reason. However, the leaders managed to chat on their way to a group photo.

The bilateral agreement also stresses the importance of the de-escalation zones in Syria as an “interim measure” to reduce the violence and create the conditions for a settlement of the conflict. The proposal to create the zones in the war-torn country was championed by Russia and was finalized during the September round of the Syria peace talks in Kazakhstan’s capital, Astana with the creation of the fourth zone in Idlib.

A further step towards resolving the conflict was made after Putin and Trump met for the first time at the G20 summit in Hamburg in July, when the leaders announced that a “breakthrough” ceasefire deal was agreed upon for southwestern Syria.

posted by ZUKUNASHI at 00:25| Comment(0) | 国際・政治