THE UNITED NATIONS, June 27. /ITAR-TASS/. The US plans to spend $500 million for training and outfitting Syrian rebels is a step in the wrong direction, Russian Permanent Ambassador to the UN Vitaly Churkin said on Thursday. In his words, 500 million dollars is “a very big sum of money.” “I am sure that it is possible to spend it for something more useful,” he told a news conference at the Russian Permanent Mission at the UN.
“They (the United States) put the situation on the wrong track,” the diplomat said. He said with regret that the US “adds fuel to the fire of Syrian conflict instead of seeking a political solution.” “We noticed that our American partners say that they are not confident whether a successor to Brahimi should be appointed and they are not confident whether talks (between Damascus and opposition) should be resumed. They are sure of nothing,” Churkin stated.
The US Administration asked the Congress for $500 million in aid to the so-called moderate armed Syrian opposition, White House spokesperson Caitlin Hayden said on Thursday.
Plans of the Obama Administration to allocate $500 million to train opposition militants raise many questions of observers. The region faced an unprecedented terrorist threat primarily coming from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant organization. Starting their extremist activities in northern Syria, terrorists of this grouping also moved to Iraq and took control of several regions in the country.
Vitaly Churkin urged to take a threat coming from the radicals quite seriously. “We faced a threat of creating a terrorist state on the territory between Aleppo and Baghdad. This is real,” he told journalists at the UN head office. The diplomat said with confidence that current situation resulted partially from failed inter-Syrian talks. He recalled that the preliminary agenda of talks included four issues, the first one was the fight against terrorism and the second was formation of an interim government. The opposition refused to discuss them separately and talks were foiled.
“Taking into account the recent activities of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, it would be better and wiser for them to agree on some joint practical steps for the fight against terrorism and with this in view propose to create some kind of a joint committee for these goals. It would lay a basis for this interim authority all are seeking to create,” the Russian permanent representative noted.