Syria's deputy foreign minister on accusations over chemical weaponsComments
As the use of chemical weapons tips the Syrian civil war into unchartered territory, euronews spoke to the country’s deputy foreign minister, Faysal al-Mikdad.
euronews: “After 10 years of the Iraq war, now we have Syria under focus. There are threats especially from the US and France to bomb against Syria. How is this impacting on Syria and the Syrian government?”
Faysal al-Mikdad: “The goal of colonialism was always to weaken the Arabs against Israel.
“It is not a war yet but an aggression and the principle goal of this aggression is to eliminate all the potential military force of Syria as happened with Iraq and has been happening with Eygpt.
“The government of Syria is ready to confront this war and aggression.
“This war has no reason but to show that the colonialist powers – US and especially France – are supporting al-Qaeda, al-Nusra and “the Islamic state of Iraq against the Arabic people of Syria.”
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euronews: “But John Kerry talked about proof of chemical weapons use by the Syrian army?”
Al-Mikdad: “This proof is ridiculous and I am laughing.
“I was the ambassador for Syria to the security council when Colin Powell showed us a bottle of white powder claiming it was proof of chemical weapons the Iraqi regime was about to use against its people.
“Later we found out it was allegations without basis. But half a million or more Iraqis were killed as a consequence of these allegations. And the US did not apologise for this.”
“They repeat the same trick. They lie when they talk about this crime claiming that the responsibility was on the Syrian government.
“They are the ones who give the chemical weapons to their allies in Syria, who are the terrorist groups.
“The US decided to support them when they start to see them being defeated.”
euronews: “What is the Syrian proof that your army did not use chemical weapons?”
Al-Mikdad: “We said publically that Syria will not use these weapons against its own people.
“At this moment Syria had the UN team and they were only 100 metres from the site where the American secret services and the West claimed that there was use of chemical weapons.
“So I confirm that these are just lies. They want only to rescue themselves from defeat to put Syria into the hands of Israel.
“As I said before Israel is the reason for all that is happening now in Syria and the whole Arab region.
“The powers of the Muslim Brotherhood, fundamentalists and al-Qaeda have been created by these western countries and by their actions they are serving the goals of colonialism in the Arab region.”
euronews: “But we saw pictures on the internet and television, showing families and children who were burning from the gas and chemical weapons. Did you see these reports in Damascus?”
Al-Mikdad: “We are sad when we see these pictures and reports.
“We said, and I hope it will be clear for everyone who is watching, that the terrorist groups used the gas of sarin in Aleppo.
“And we have the proof that these terrorist groups hit our soldiers with chemical weapons near Damascus in the same areas where the US and their allies claim that the Syrian army used them.
“We confirm the people who used the chemical weapons were agents of the secret services of US and their allies. It is the secret services who fabricated this story with Bandar Bin Sultan who is a spy for the US and the western secret services.
“Syria is innocent of all these allegations – our morality doesn’t allow us to commit such crimes. It could be that the pictures are genuine but who used the chemical weapons are the criminals and the terrorists backed by the US, France and others.
“al-Nusra and al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups said that they have the potential to make chemical weapons. Turkey arrested a terrorist group which had 2kg of chemical materials from Libya. The Iraqi government arrested people who were about to manufacture more chemical materials. This is public knowledge.”
euronews: “Does that mean you are accusing directly Saudi Arabia?”
Al-Mikdad: “I accuse everyone who finances and arms the terrorist groups in order to commit these crimes. They are the ones responsible for the bloodshed in Syria. Saudi Arabia is the main player.”
euronews: “What will be the consequences of the potential bombing in Syria?”
Al-Mikdad: “We will not stand by and watch what the US and its allies will do in the region. The whole region will be affected by what will be happening in Syria.”
euronews: “Can the Syrian government confront this kind of bombing, which will target sensitive and strategic sites?”
Al-Mikdad: “We do not have the capacity to confront the American military machine. But we will resist and we will defend our dignity and the honour of the Syrian citizens and the Syrian territory.”
euronews: “What kind of consequences could there be for Israel and Turkey by the bombing?”
Al-Mikdad: “I am now talking to all the people of the world and saying that any kind of bombing or aggression in Syria is just giving support and victory to al-Qaeda and al-Nusra, without reference to any principles or values.
“The UN charter, as formulated by the founding fathers including the US, forbids states to act outside of the security council’s resolutions. It doesn’t allow states to violate international security and peace.”