BEIRUT, LEBANON (11:40 P.M.) – The U.S.’ military presence in Syria violates the country’s territorial sovereignty and UN Charter, the Syrian Foreign Ministry announced on Tuesday.

“The U.S. military presence and the presence of any military in Syria without government approval is a direct assault on its sovereignty and a violation of the UN Charter,” the Syrian Foreign Ministry stated.

“On the contrary, this presence only leads to prolonging the crisis and further complicating it, and this is where the real goal of this U.S. presence in Syria lies,” the Syrian Foreign Ministry added.

The Syrian Foreign Ministry’s statement comes just 24 hours after the U.S’ Secretary of Defense, James Mattis, claimed the U.S. military will remain in Syria until a settlement is made.

“We’re not just going to walk away right now before the Geneva process has cracked. That doesn’t mean everyone stays there. That doesn’t mean for certain — certain troops are leaving… We’re going to make sure we set the conditions for a diplomatic solution… Not just, you know, fight the cop part of it and then say good luck on the rest of it. We did it for that — to support the diplomatic solution,” Mattis said.

The Syrian Government has repeatedly stated that it does not welcome the U.S.’ military presence in Syria and demands all of their forces withdraw under no preconditions.

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As I had anticipated and as was to be expected. Well, in order for a political solution to be found, the pre-requisite of the UNSC resolution 2254 to which the US signed to which clearly warrants quote: ‘The respect Syrian Sovereignty, independence and territirial integrity’ must be honoured by the US and all other forces illegally occupying Syrian land and airspace. Unless the US and all others comply with that fundamental pre-requisite by leaving Syrian sovereign land abd airspace, there can be no Geneva talks. Peace talks cannot go under foreign military occupation.