Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has vowed to continue operations in eastern Ghouta, stressing that they are part of the country’s battle against terrorism.
“We will continue fighting terrorism … and the Ghouta operation is a continuation of fighting terrorism,” said Assad during a Monday broadcast on state television. “There is no contradiction between a truce and combat operations. The progress achieved yesterday and the day before in Ghouta by the Syrian Arab Army was made during this truce,” he added.
The Syrian president was referring to a Russian-proposed daily humanitarian ceasefire from 9 am to 2 pm local time.
“Therefore we must continue with the operation in parallel with opening the way for civilians to leave,” he added.
He further went on to dismiss Western claims concerning the humanitarian situation in eastern Ghouta as ridiculous false accusations. “The humanitarian situation which the West speaks of from time to time, is a very ridiculous lie, as ridiculous as the western officials who repeat it.”
Eastern Ghouta, a besieged area on the outskirts of Damascus that is home to some 400,000 people, has witnessed deadly violence over the past few weeks, with Takfiri terrorists launching mortar attacks on the Syrian capital in the face of an imminent humiliating defeat.—Agencies