White House Worried Russia Escalating War in Syria

Russian-Mi-24-helicopter Maxim MarmurAP
Maxim Marmur/AP

WASHINGTON, D.C.– The White House is concerned that Russia’s increasing military activity in Syria could lead to more chaos in the country, Press Secretary Josh Earnest said today.

He also warned that more Russian military buildup would “risk confrontation” with the counter-ISIL coalition that included the United States.

“We’ve made clear that it would be unconscionable for any party, including Russia, to provide any support to the Assad regime,” Earnest said.

Under current Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, Earnest pointed out that ISIS gained foothold in the country due to the ongoing civil war. He admitted that even more refugees would likely flee the country if the violence increased.

“The Assad regime has failed to confront ISIL and the Assad regime has created an environment where ISIL has been able to establish a foothold, but we’ve also seen Assad actively carry out acts of violence against the Syrian people,” Earnest said.

Earnest said that he was not aware of any plans for Obama to discuss the issue with Russian President Vladimir Putin, but that Secretary of State John Kerry had already expressed his concerns over Labor Day weekend.