Friday, 15 January 2016

FSA adviser: IS cannot be eliminated without us

 'The FSA is deployed from Syria’s south to its north. It is mostly present in Daraa and Quneitra, represented by the Southern Front, and in the capital, Damascus, the FSA is positioned in the Jobar neighborhood, one of the most contested areas. Al-Rahman Corps and the Shuhada al-Islam Brigade [Martyrs of Islam Brigade], which are also part of the FSA, are stationed in western and eastern Ghouta. In northern Syria, the FSA is significantly present in Aleppo, represented by Thuwar al-Sham, al-Sham Front and Sultan Murad Brigade. [The FSA-affiliated] Jaish al-Nasr [Victory Army], the Glory Army and the Central Division are stationed in Hama’s countryside, while the largest number of FSA fighters deployed on the coast is represented by the 1st and 2nd Coastal Squads and the 10th Brigade.

 The one hindering the establishment of this safe zone is none other than the US. This is not just an allegation. Rather, repeated statements were issued in this respect, [including] by Pentagon spokesman John Kirby, who said on July 1, 2015, that at that moment, the US did not see a need for the establishment of a safe zone in Syria.
 Meanwhile, the regime’s air force dropped dozens of barrel bombs on Aleppo and Darayya, and the killing of civilians led to daily waves of displacement. Indeed, if a safe zone were established, more than 70% of the people heading to Europe by sea would change their minds. Syrians are not thrilled about the suicide journey to Europe, but they are in search of a safe haven. If such a zone is established, many Syrians will return to this region. We are people who love their country, and we have our culture and our own professions.
 The only reason Syrians are migrating is that for four years now, we have been killed by the deadly weapons of Assad’s regime, and we have lost hope of being saved by the international community.
 The FSA has been fighting IS since before 2014, even before anyone in the world ever thought of fighting this organization. Our fight against IS in the northern countryside of Aleppo and in other areas is independent of any international plan. IS cannot be eliminated without the FSA. We have a history of struggle against all of those who killed Syrians. Therefore, no one can question the FSA’s objectives when it fights IS, because its project is purely Syrian, and it aims to protect Syrians rather than serve other agendas.
 The US is gradually moving from a neutral position toward being a partner in crime as it allows Assad and his allies to kill Syrians. Scary massacres are being committed against Syrians, who have been left to starve to death under siege in the city of Madaya and [killed] by chemical weapons. Syrians are paying a high price as a result of the US policy failure in Iraq and its weakness in the Middle East in general. It is not required that the US send fighters on the ground. This is not what we want. What we want is for Assad to be prevented from targeting civilians and for the [supporters] of the Syrian revolution [i.e. Turkey, Qatar and Saudi Arabia] to be allowed to provide rebels with qualitative weapons. The US supports the Syrian Democratic Forces, which include al-Sanadid Army, one of the regime's militias. We, however, do not trust these forces, and they not surprisingly getting weapons that are hundreds of times more numerous than the weapons received by the FSA.
 Russia’s declaration that it supports the FSA is ridiculous as all facts prove the contrary. Russian airstrikes are ongoing around the clock, targeting our sites and locations. Our position is clear: We will not coordinate or cooperate with Russia.'

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