US: Unclear if Putin claims to support Free Syrian Army are true

By REUTERS
December 11, 2015 21:50

 
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WASHINGTON- The US State Department said on Friday it was unable to confirm claims by Russian President Vladimir Putin that his country supports the opposition Free Syrian Army as well as Syrian government forces, providing it with arms and air support.

State Department spokesman John Kirby said he had seen reports about Putin's statement on Friday that Russia had supported the Free Syrian Army in joint operations alongside Syrian government troops against Islamist militants.

"It's unclear to us ... whether these claims of support to the FSA are true," Kirby said. "So I'm not in a position to validate the comments except to say that as we've said in the past, the vast majority of air strikes conducted by Russian military aircraft" are against groups opposed to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and not aimed at Islamic State, he said.

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