‘If the West is serious about fighting the Islamic State, it should stop funding it and close Turkey’s border with Syria’ – Riad Kamel Abbas

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Riad Kamel Abbas | Ambassador of Syria
Riad Kamel Abbas | Ambassador of Syria. Photo: Vijay Pandey

The Islamic State is a creation of the West and to that extent the United States and its allies are responsible for the mess in Syria and Iraq, a combative Riad Kamel Abbas, Ambassador of the Syrian Arab Republic to India, tells Ramesh Ramachandran in an interview. The envoy says that the refugee crisis is a manifestation of the machinations of the West, which is using its fight against the Islamic State as a pretext to topple the government of President Bashar al-Assad of Syria.


Edited Excerpts from an interview

What or who do you think is responsible for the mass exodus of Syrian nationals to Europe?

First of all, I want to ask you, who is behind this problem? What has led to this refugee crisis? The problem started in Syria when the United States, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Qatar and others created a big army of mercenaries who came from all over the world to kill our people and destroy our country. Turkey opened its borders to support them to enter Syria. The problem started in Syria because of terrorism and who is responsible for creating this problem in the first place? The countries I just now mentioned to you.

Who would want to leave their home? Nobody wants to leave their country. We didn’t have this problem (refugee crisis) before now. This exodus is not natural. They created problem in our country; now the problem has shifted to their countries.

Their aim is to destroy Syria and change the regime there by military force. The conflict (that erupted in 2011) and everything that has happened since then is a ploy of the West to destabilise the Syrian regime and to topple or dismantle it by force. Turkey has kept its borders open and it is supporting these mercenaries to enter Syria. Turkey is telling the West: You have to ask me to help you. If you don’t ask me, I will leave the borders open. His (President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey) aim is to enforce a no-fly zone in Syria… if you don’t help me with the no-fly zone, I will keep my borders open.

The West wants to use the Syrian refugees in Europe for their own ends. Its aim is to use religion against Syria; to brainwash them; and to use them if there is a presidential election in the future in Syria to vote against President Bashar al-Assad.

The image of Alan Kurdi, a three-year-old Syrian boy, who was washed ashore on a Turkish beach, has shaken the conscience of many around the world. So if I were to ask you, “Who killed Alan Kurdi”, what would your reply be?

The one who has created the problem in Syria and all the problems in the world. All the suicide bombings worldwide are carried out by the Wahhabis. And who supports them? Not a single act of terror is carried out by a non-Wahhabi person. Be it the 2001 attacks in New York, the 2004 Madrid train bombings, the 2005 London bombings or the 2015 attack on Charlie Hebdo in Paris, all were carried out by the Wahhabis. For instance, Hayat Boumeddiene, the wife of the Paris supermarket gunman Amedy Coulibaly, is reported to have fled to Syria via Turkey. Who facilitated her travels? Syria is facing cross-border terrorism and that is also causing the exodus. The refugees are come from the areas where the terror groups are active. Not all refugees are Syrian. Some are Iraqis, Eritreans and other nationalities. Some are reported to be using or have used fake Syrian passports to enter Europe. Some of the refugees, almost 25 percent, comprise Islamic State elements. They sent bad goods to our country; now they are getting bad goods in their country. This is the impact or reaction of their work in Syria.

What is the provenance of the Islamic State?

It is well known how the United States and its allies such as Saudi Arabia created al-Qaeda in Afghanistan to defeat the erstwhile USSR. They recruited people from the Islamic countries and made them fight against the non-believers in Afghanistan. This idea succeeded at that time. Subsequently, the United States occupied Afghanistan and Iraq. When the United States pulled out from Iraq, they could not continue their occupation and they lost many American soldiers; then they created a new idea … same copy of Afghanistan … and they created the Islamic State.

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