“The actions of the pilots of the coalition are on the verge between criminal negligence and direct contributes to the the terrorists of ISIS”. So the Russian foreign Ministry commented on the tragic incident, which put into question the Russian-American agreement on Syria. Although the United States came into open sparring on this issue with the Russian Ambassador to the UN, the guilt, the Americans are in some measure acknowledged.
The incident occurred on the evening of September 17 in the strategically important area around the Syrian city of Deir-ez-Zor. There are oil fields and the road, control of which for a long time, the ongoing fighting between Syrian government forces and militias of the “Islamic state”.
“And I was interested to hear how she is going to accuse us of all mortal sins, and I, in turn, is also gone”
From about 17.00 to 17.50 two American F-16 aircraft and two A-10 attack aircraft, one of which belonged to the Australian air force, attacked the positions of government troops. According to the government of Syria has killed 62 soldiers, and about 100 were injured.
The representative of the Russian Ministry of defense Igor Konashenkov, referring to the Syrian authorities, said that immediately after the formation of air strikes “Islamic state” launched an attack. But, apparently, much success Islamists have not achieved.
On Saturday, just a few hours after the incident, the Pentagon gave an explanation. “Syria is a complex situation where there are different military forces that are located close to each other. But coalition forces would not deliberately strike the known units of the Syrian army. The coalition will consider the impact and the circumstances in which he was struck to learn from this”, – quotes RIA “news” the message the U.S. defense Department.
“If we do by mistake struck blow to the Syrian military, we regret for it, especially in connection with the death of people,” according to TASS, said the press Secretary of the Pentagon Peter cook.
Then the Central command of the U.S. armed forces (the so-called CENTCOM) in a statement acknowledged that the American coalition inflicted air strikes on the positions of Syrian troops. However, the U.S. military is trying to defend:
“The coalition forces believed that they strike fighting positions DAISH (IG*, is prohibited in Russia – ed.) who they tracked for a considerable time before impact. The coalition airstrikes have been stopped immediately as soon as officials of the coalition had informed Russian officials that, perhaps, the personnel and the machines, which strikes belonged to the Syrian army. The place of impact is in the area where the coalition has attacked in the past, and members of the coalition in joint military operations earlier informed the Russian colleagues about the impending air strike”, – said in a statement that leads RIA “Novosti”.
Similar statements were also made by Australia, whose Ministry of defense assured that Australian troops would never aim at the soldiers of the Syrian army intentionally.
However, Russia is not up to the end believed in this explanation. The representative of the Russian foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova criticized the U.S. action, saying they jeopardize the peace agreement for Syria. In a blow to the Syrian army Moscow saw “elements of provocation”.
“The actions of the pilots of the coalition, if they are, we hope, was taken under instructions from Washington, are on the verge between criminal negligence and direct contributes to the ISIL terrorists,” – said in the comments of the Department of press and information of MFA of Russia.
On the initiative of Russia was urgently convened a consultative meeting of the UN Security Council on Syria. The main event of this event was the move of U.S. permanent representative Samantha Power. During the speech of Russian representative in UN Vitaly Churkin she went out into the corridor to journalists and said that her country did not agree with the very fact of convening a consultation. Appeal to the security Council about the bombing of Deir-ez-Zor Power called “hypocritical and cynical trick”. After the speech, Churkin she returned to the hall and when it came to her, began to speak.
“In these circumstances, and I was interested to hear how she is going to accuse us of all mortal sins, and I, in turn, is also gone,” he told reporters later Churkin.
In the afternoon of 18 September, the Russian foreign Ministry issued a special statement at the last UN meeting. “It is regrettable and unconstructive vague US position on the urgently convened at the initiative of Russia the UN security Council meeting. Us officials not only have failed to give an adequate explanation of what happened, but also tried according to their wont, to turn everything on its head”, – stated in the message.
In addition, a kind of Russia’s response to the incident in Deir ez-Zor and on the move, Power can be considered a partial disclosure to her of the text of the Russian-American agreements on Syria, concluded the Minister of foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov and us Secretary of state John Kerry in July of this year and finally agreed on 9 September. The Americans were opposed to this document became known to a wider public. In the excerpts which were read Churkin, spoke of the need to delineate areas that are under the absolute control of the moderate opposition, supported by the United States, and terrorist groups “Islamic state” and “Dzhebhat EN-Nusra” against which the Russian and the American part should act in strict coordination. Thus, according to the agreements, their implementation needs to start work on September 19.
Churkin criticized the Americans that they did not want to wait two days and struck in the Deir ez-Zor without the coordination with Russia (read with the government of Bashar Assad, which the Americans flatly refuse to go on direct contacts). However, as made clear by the Russian representative, which occurred on the previous Kerry and Lavrov agreements not affected. To abandon them, Moscow is not going to. Do not plan to revise the agreement with Russia and the Americans. Therefore, cooperation between the US and Russia in resolving the situation in Syria, no matter what, will continue.
In part, this can be considered Russia’s recognition of the fact that there is a high probability of randomness of this incident. Speaking with plenty of comments of the Western media hold the same point of view. The more that the United States had already allowed such mistakes, the biggest of which recently was an airstrike by U.S. aircraft at the hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan. Killing 24 people, including 12 doctors and nurses, as well as three children. The US not only apologized for this tragedy, but also punished those responsible. However, punished got off with administrative punishment – none of the American military was not charged criminally.
* Organization in respect of which the court accepted entered into legal force decision on liquidation or ban the activities on the grounds stipulated by the Federal law “On countering extremist activity”