Russian President’s special envoy: Sleeper Islamist cells in Syria become highly active

16.02.2021, Sochi.

Russian observers reported that the sleeping cells of ISIL (organization banned in Russia) in Syria became highly active, Russian President’s special envoy for Syria Alexander Lavrentiev said to the reporters on February 16.

Lavrentiev said, “Over the past three months, we receive information and we see the sleeping cells of the so-called ISIL [organization banned in Russia – Rossa Primavera News Agency’s editorial note] becoming certainly active. The increase in number of clashes in the north-west, also the radical groups that have entrenched themselves there have become highly active. “

He noted that the United States declined an invitation to take part in a conference on a Syrian settlement in Sochi. According to him, now the US authorities are busy with domestic policy and, probably, have not decided on their policy in Syria.

Lavrentiev recalled that the goal is to exclude any agreements with terrorist organizations in Syria.

“I repeat once again, the imperative – the complete destruction of these groups – remains. There can be no compromise agreements with terrorists,” he added.

Background

In 2020, most of the fighting in the territory of the Syrian Arab Republic (SAR) has been localized to several areas in the Idlib province where peace had not come yet to Syrian soil.

All participants in the civil war in Syria, except for the government forces as well as Russian and Iranian forces which support the army of Assad, are accustomed to using sabotage as a way of warfare, planting explosive devices to blow up vehicles and infrastructure.

Terrorists from groups like ISIL (an organization banned in Russia) continue to use such methods. Most of the time, their attacks are aimed at Kurds in the Syrian regions to east of the Euphrates River. However, the “sleeping” cells of Islamists are trying to organize terrorist attacks in the areas that have long been liberated by the Syrian army.

Militants from Hayat Tahrir al-Sham group (organization banned Russia), internationally recognized as a terrorist group, and their accomplices from the “moderate opposition” groups regularly plant IEDs into vehicles during conflicts with each other when fighting for the zones influence in the terrorist-controlled province of Idlib. Similar sabotage strategy was used against Assad’s army by US-trained fighters and militant groups controlled by the US military.

Eventually, Kurds from the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) also began to plant bombs into vehicles used by opposing militants during their guerrilla war. Kurds started using guerrilla war tactics against the pro-Turkish “moderate opposition”, and the Turkish soldiers brought into Syrian soil after losing part of their territories in the area near the city of Afrin to the east of the Euphrates River. The SDF lost this territory during Turkish Olive Branch and Peace Spring Operations in 2018 and 2019. As a result, terrorist attacks involving car bombings or IEDs occur in Syria almost daily. Some of them lead to casualties of opposing each other militants only, but, often ordinary Syrians also suffer from explosions.

Source: Rossa Primavera News Agency

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