Syria says 'no' to foreign ground troops fighting Daesh

Published February 9th, 2015 - 02:02 GMT

The Syrian Arab Army has refused to allow foreign ground troops on Syrian soil in the fight against ISIS (Daesh), AFP reported, and said they will be "honorably undertaking" the responsibility to take down the terrorist organization themselves.

Foreign Minister Walid al-Muallem said in Damascus on Monday that Jordan has not been coordinating efforts with Syria in the fight against Daesh after the murder of Jordanian pilot Muath al-Kasasbeh.

"So far, there is no coordination between Syria and Jordan in the fight against terrorism," Foreign Minister Muallem told the AFP at a news conference. AP reported al-Muallem said no outside help is needed in fighting Daesh and further ciritisized Jordan for its increased airstrikes following al-Kasasbeh's murder. 

Al-Muallem told the AFP Syria reached out to Jordan in the wake of al-Kasasbeh's death to coordinate efforts but didn't get a response.

At a join press conference in Damascus, al-Muallem said, "we will not allow anyone to violate our national sovereignty and we do not need any ground troops to fight Daesh." 

"The Syrian Arab government is fully capable of fighting Daesh valiantly and we don't need any other troops," he told the AP. 

More than 210,000 people have been killed since the Syrian conflict began in 2011, AFP reported. Half of the country's population has been displaced, with the majority of refugees living in Jordan, Turkey, Lebanon and Iraq. 

At the press conference al-Muallem criticized the international community and said it was failing to do its part, according to the AFP, complaining that foreign countries have been placing its money in more weapons to the rebels rather than in aid. He said the Syrian government has contributed 70 percent of the aid.

UN peace envoy Staffan de Mistura is expected to hold a discussion on a plan to halt the fighting in Aleppo on Tuesday. Al-Muallem said the Syrian government would be able to support the conflict in Aleppo city, not the entire province.

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