Spokeswoman of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs Maria Zakharova stressed that the refusal of the Western countries to provide Russia with information about the so-called Free Army affirms that it is a fake organization with no tangible existence.
Zakharova said during an interview with SANA reporter in Moscow on Wednesday: “During our contacts with the West, they told us about something called “Free Army” whose is a constructive opposition fighting ISIS terrorists and that Moscow has to take this matter into account.”
“Hence we asked our Western partners especially the Americans to provide us with information about this army, their nature, positions and commanders and how one can contact them or cooperate with them,” Zakharova said, adding that “Russia has received none. It’s unbelievable but that’s what has happened. Therefore, such an army is a fake organization which is much talked about without being seen.
Zakharova wondered why the Western countries always talk about organizations that combat terrorism but do not exist on the ground, which emphasizes that it is a propaganda war and an attempt to classify terrorists as “bad and good guys that we can cooperate with.”
Zakharova said “Russia emphasizes the need for practical dialogue, meaning that if new organizations emerge, we can be sure that the Western partners which stand behind them can talk to us calmly about where they are active and their goals, then it will be possible to start coordination with them. But unfortunately, nothing of the kind happened.”
Zakharova pointed out that Western countries criticized Russia when it began military operations against terrorism at the request of Damascus, adding that Russia responded by President Vladimir Putin, who asked them to provide a list of terrorist targets to be bombarded, but they were uncooperative.
“Russia is taking all necessary steps through constant contact with Damascus in addition to contacts with various representatives of the Syrian opposition, both internal and external and talking to them,” Zakharova said, noting that two rounds of consultative meetings between the government and representatives from the opposition were held in Moscow.