EXCLUSIVE – Syrian Official: Most Rebels Still Fighting Regime Are Foreign

A-Free-Syrian-Army-fighter-in-2012 AP
AP Photo/Virginie Nguyen Huang

Most jihadi militants who haven’t given up on fighting against the Syrian regime are foreign, a Syrian Information Ministry official claimed to Breitbart Jerusalem.

In most of the flashpoint areas, like Aleppo, the Damascus area and Deraa, he said, a governmental reconciliation commission has reached ceasefire agreements with local leaders in exchange for amnesty for the rebels.

Those who insist on continuing to fight, he said, were rebels from Chechnya, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, France, Belgium and North African countries who “refuse to give up their activity in Syria not just to wreak havoc and spread terror, but to use Syria as a base for their global terrorist campaign.”

The official did not provide any evidence to back up the contention.

“The Syrian intelligence agencies that were charged with interrogating captured terrorists handed over to their counterparts in the region and in the West, predominantly in France, Belgium, Russia, the Netherlands and Germany, information about impending attacks,” he said.

He said the information was transferred on many occasions via Russian and “friendly Arab” agents – probably Egyptian. He said that the sea change in the West regarding Syria, chiefly the fact that Assad’s departure is no longer a precondition for attempts to resolve the Syrian crisis, results from “the realization that Syria is the first line of defense against international terror and that the Syrian army, albeit mainly preoccupied with recapturing territories that have been lost to terrorist organizations, is a key player in the global war on terror.”

He said that the captured “terrorists” were also interrogated by intelligence officers from Russia and other countries that he insisted would remain unnamed.

He criticized Turkey and said that despite its official position, which is hostile to the Islamic State, it has harbored jihadi militants from different organizations before or after going to fight in Syria.

“The number of jihadi terrorists crossing from Turkey into Syria and back has been on the decline, but that’s thanks to a Syrian, and not Turkish, effort,” he said. “On the contrary, Turkey’s military campaign along the border, purportedly against IS, allows terrorists belonging to Al Qaeda and other organizations to enter Syrian soil and rely on Turkish support to develop a terrorist infrastructure that would in turn hit Syria and other countries in the region.”

Meanwhile, the Lebanese army decided to allocate 45,000 troops to secure Christmas celebrations, especially in crowded places like churches and nightlife hotspots. According to the Lebanese media, 80 percent of the troops will be Muslims. They were ordered to open fire at any suspicious person, especially those believed to be wearing an explosive belt.

Aaron Klein is Breitbart’s Jerusalem bureau chief and senior investigative reporter. He is a New York Times bestselling author and hosts the popular weekend talk radio program, “Aaron Klein Investigative Radio.” Follow him on Twitter @AaronKleinShow. Follow him on Facebook.


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