Russia blames US for militants' move in Syria

11 October 2017 | 17:23

Source: Associated Press

  • Source: Associated Press
  • Last update: 11 October 2017 | 17:23

In this Sept. 26, 2016 photo Russian defense ministry spokesman Maj.-Gen. Igor Konashenkov speaks to the media in Moscow, Russia. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev, file)

BEIRUT: The Russian military accused the United States of turning a blind eye to deployment of militants in Syria. 

The Russian Defense Ministry spokesman, Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov, said on Wednesday that about 600 militants have moved from the area around Tanf near the Jordanian border in Syria's southeast, where U.S. military advisers are based. He says they moved to Tafas, about 300 kilometers (some 185 miles) west.

Konashenkov said the militants seized two humanitarian convoys in Tafas and that their relocation could derail a deal for a de-escalation zone in the area. He said the U.S. will bear responsibility if that happens.

The accusations appear to reflect Russia-U.S. tensions as U.S.-backed Syrian forces and the Russian-backed Syrian army race for control of oil and gas-rich areas of eastern Syria.

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