Putin swipes at Biden and condemns 'illegitimate' US forces in Syria as he hosts dictator Bashar al-Assad in Moscow

 Russia's Vladimir Putin took a swipe at Biden and condemned 'illegitimate' US forces in Syria in a meeting with dictator Bashar al-Assad in Moscow last night. 

The pair met in the Russian capital to discuss cooperation between their armies and how to continue operations to gain control of the last rebel-held areas in Syria in their first talks since a summit in Damascus last year. 

Putin during the meeting blasted the presence of 'foreign forces' in parts of Syria as 'illegal' because they have no approval by the UN or Assad's government. 

'This clearly violates international law and doesn't allow you to make maximum efforts to consolidate the country,' Putin told Assad. 

Though Putin did not name US forces he appeared to be referring to hundreds of American troops stationed in eastern Syria working with Kurdish-led fighters battling the Islamic State group as well as Turkish forces in northern Syria.  

Russia's Vladimir Putin took a swipe at Biden and condemned 'illegitimate' US forces in Syria in a meeting with dictator Bashar al-Assad in Moscow last night

Russia's Vladimir Putin took a swipe at Biden and condemned 'illegitimate' US forces in Syria in a meeting with dictator Bashar al-Assad in Moscow last night

In an apparent swipe at US President Joe Biden, Putin appeared to describe American forces in Syria as 'illegal' because they have no permission from the UN or Assad

In an apparent swipe at US President Joe Biden, Putin appeared to describe American forces in Syria as 'illegal' because they have no permission from the UN or Assad

Hundreds of American troops are stationed in eastern Syria working with Kurdish-led fighters battling the Islamic State group, and also Turkish forces in northern Syria

Hundreds of American troops are stationed in eastern Syria working with Kurdish-led fighters battling the Islamic State group, and also Turkish forces in northern Syria

Putin criticizes foreign forces in Syria at Kremlin meet with Assad
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Syrian state TV described it as a long meeting and said the two were later joined by Syria's foreign minister and Russia's defense minister to discuss mutual relations and fighting terrorism.

Putin and Assad also discussed the political process in the war-torn country, the TV said, with the Russian leader congratulating his counterpart on winning a fourth term in office in a presidential election in May.

'Terrorists sustained very serious damage, and the Syrian government, headed by you, controls 90 per cent of the territories,' Putin said, according to a Kremlin statement. 

Russia joined Syria's 10-year conflict in September 2015, when the Syrian military appeared close to collapse, and has since helped in tipping the balance of power in favor of Assad, whose forces now control much of the country. 

Hundreds of Russian troops are deployed across Syria and they also have a military air base along Syria's Mediterranean coast.

'I am happy to meet you in Moscow, six years after our joint operations to fight terrorism,' the Syrian TV quoted Assad as saying. Assad has made very few visits abroad since the conflict began.  

However, significant parts of Syria remain outside of state control, with Turkish forces deployed in much of the north and northwest - the last major bastion of anti-Assad rebels - and US forces in the Kurdish-controlled east and northeast.  

Russia's Putin and Syria's Assad met last night for lengthy talks and their first summit since they spoke in Damascus in January 2020

Russia's Putin and Syria's Assad met last night for lengthy talks and their first summit since they spoke in Damascus in January 2020

Syrian state TV described it as a long meeting and said the two were later joined by Syria's foreign minister(not pictured) and Russia's defense minister (not pictured) to discuss mutual relations and fighting terrorism

Syrian state TV described it as a long meeting and said the two were later joined by Syria's foreign minister(not pictured) and Russia's defense minister (not pictured) to discuss mutual relations and fighting terrorism

Russia joined Syria's 10-year conflict in September 2015, and has since helped in tipping the balance of power in favor of Assad (pictured, Russian forces in Daraa on September 1)

Russia joined Syria's 10-year conflict in September 2015, and has since helped in tipping the balance of power in favor of Assad (pictured, Russian forces in Daraa on September 1)

Hundreds of Russian troops (pictured in Daraa on September 1) are deployed across Syria and they also have a military air base along Syria's Mediterranean coast

Hundreds of Russian troops (pictured in Daraa on September 1) are deployed across Syria and they also have a military air base along Syria's Mediterranean coast

In recent weeks, Syrian opposition activists said that Russian warplanes have been carrying out strikes on the northwestern province of Idlib, the last major rebel stronghold in the country. 

The region is home to some 4 million people, many of them internally displaced by the conflict.

Last week, a Russian-negotiated cease-fire deal went into effect to end a government siege and intense fighting in the southern city of Daraa. 

The deal brought areas held by the rebels in the city under government control for the first time since 2013.

'We have the intention in Syria as a government and institutions to move in parallel between the liberation of land and the political process,' the TV also quoted Assad as saying.

In recent weeks, Syrian opposition activists said that Russian warplanes have been carrying out strikes on the northwestern province of Idlib, the last major rebel stronghold in the country

In recent weeks, Syrian opposition activists said that Russian warplanes have been carrying out strikes on the northwestern province of Idlib, the last major rebel stronghold in the country

Idlib, the last rebel stronghold in northern Syria, is home to some 4 million people, many of them internally displaced by the conflict

Idlib, the last rebel stronghold in northern Syria, is home to some 4 million people, many of them internally displaced by the conflict


The Kremlin said Assad thanked the Russian leader for humanitarian aid to Syria and for his efforts to halt the 'spread of terrorism'.

He lauded what he called the success of Russian and Syrian armies in 'liberating occupied territories' of Syria.

Assad also described as 'antihuman' and 'illegitimate' sanctions imposed by some nations on Syria.

The United States tightened sanctions against Syria last year, saying they were aimed at forcing Assad to stop the war and agree to a political solution. 

The TV said the during the meeting, the two leaders discussed cooperation between their armies 'in fighting terrorism and the continuation of liberating lands held by terrorists.' 

Assad's government refers to all armed opposition groups as terrorists.

The visit was Assad's first to Russia since he visited the Black Sea resort of Sochi in 2018 for talks with Putin.

Syria's conflict began in March 2011 with anti-government protests and later turned into a civil war that has killed half a million people and displaced half the country's pre-war population of 23 million, including 5 million who are refugees outside the country.

The visit was Assad's first to Russia since he visited the Black Sea resort of Sochi in 2018 for talks with Putin

The visit was Assad's first to Russia since he visited the Black Sea resort of Sochi in 2018 for talks with Putin

Putin swipes at Biden and condemns 'illegitimate' US forces in Syria as he hosts dictator Bashar al-Assad in Moscow Putin swipes at Biden and condemns 'illegitimate' US forces in Syria as he hosts dictator Bashar al-Assad in Moscow Reviewed by STATION GOSSIP on 10:45 Rating: 5

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