Putin, meanwhile, has derided USA efforts to end the Syria war, which has driven a tide of refugees into neighboring states and Europe. Iraq has also quietly enabled the Russian military buildup in Syria and has cooperated with Iran, from which it receives military support.
That’s why his forthcoming trip to New York is so important: not what he’ll say at the United Nations General Assembly but the meeting he’s due to have with Kerry in preparation for his “reunion” with the USA president later this Fall. “This is not yet coordinated”.
“We didn’t talk about Iraq this morning”, the official said. “He is one of the great recruiting sergeants for Isil,” he said. Iraq has allowed Russian military transport planes to fly over its airspace to supply Syria with weapons, against the wishes of its American allies.
“We’re sure there were no casualties” among civilians, he added.
Washington and London have in recent weeks softened their stance on the Assad regime as their deployment of air strikes have failed to achieve any marked resolution. It is a view shared by the Pentagon, Defense officials told CNN.
However, the limited strikes will likely have but a limited effect.
U.S.-led airstrikes helped Syrian Kurds hold the strategic border town of Kobani in January, and seize another key border town, Tal Abyad, this summer.
In addition, Paris has become alarmed by Islamic State gains in northern Syria and the possibility of France being sidelined in negotiations to reach a political solution in Syria.
Russian Federation and Iran have both armed the Syrian regime, and Rouhani echoed Putin’s position.
The Islamic State extremist group already controls about two-thirds of Syria, and “has had the greatest safe havens and growth opportunities” in the country, he stressed.
At the same time, the U.S.-led global coalition that has been striking Islamic State targets in Iraq and Syria from the air since last fall is grappling with a series of setbacks.
“The level hasn’t been decided yet”.
He was accused by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn of failing to show leadership on the Syria crisis by choosing to leave the keynote speech on that issue to Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond.
“We are just at the beginning of trying to understand what the Russians’ intentions are in Syria, in Iraq, and to try to see if there are mutually beneficial ways forward here”.
However he said reports of Russian military action in Syria would not alter such plans.
Rouhani said the United States, which has expressed outrage at Russia’s move, should not be surprised.
Mr Putin mocked the US’s $500 million program to train local rebels to fight ISIS where – as conceded by the Pentagon – four out of five “soldiers” have either defected to ISIS and or al-Qaeda with their U.S. weaponry or simply deserted.
“Russia will not participate in any troop operations in the territory of Syria or in any other states”.
Barack Obama in more than a year, Putin said in an interview with Charlie Rose that “we would welcome a common platform for collective action against the terrorists“.
“People who break worldwide law should be subject to global law”, the prime minister told reporters traveling with him. Ending the Syrian civil war is the only way to ease that pressure. “We are having good success, particularly in the northern part of the country, actually blunting ISIL’s progress and rolling them back“, Power said, using an acronym for the Islamist group.
He said the Syrian government does need reform.
But short of sending in ground forces – an option Western countries are not willing to entertain – the stalemate in the war against the Islamic State group is likely to persist.
Elsewhere in the country, a vehicle bomb near a cricket match in the eastern Paktika province killed nine people and wounded 33, according to the Interior Ministry.