Iran Calls US Military Presence in Syria ‘Illegal’, Threatens More Attacks

Iran’s Foreign Ministry said that the US military presence in Syria is “illegal” and violates international law as well as Syria’s national sovereignty. US claims that it is in Syria to fight the Islamic State are specious according to Iran’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kanaani, whose statements were carried on Saturday by Iranian state media, because the US played a major role in creating the Islamic State, known by its Arabic initials as Daesh. In addition, Keyvan Khosravi, spokesman for Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, threatened that his country’s armed forces would respond to any attack on its bases in Iran by the US using the pretext that Syria requested such an offensive, he said. The statements came after US attacks on pro-Iran installations in eastern Syria which left at least 19 fighters dead, including three Syrian troops, 11 Syrian fighters in pro-government militias, and five non-Syrian fighters who were aligned with the government, according to the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. The US carried out the airstrikes in eastern Syria in response to a drone attack on Thursday on a US base that left one American contractor dead and six Americans injured, including one contractor and five US troops.

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