Bashar al-Assad’s top aide says the US has no right to Syrian oil and warns of ‘operation’ against US troops
- Bouthaina Shaaban is Syrian President Assad’s top political and media aide
- US plans to guard Syrian oilfields was like ‘talking about stealing it’, she said
- Pentagon chief said the US would leave 600 soldiers to guard the black gold
A top adviser to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has said the US has ‘absolutely no right’ to Syria’s oil and warns of ‘operations’ against American troops.
Bouthaina Shaaban, Assad’s top political and media aide, has said that US President Donald Trump is ‘talking about stealing [the oil]’ when discussing plans to expand military operations in Syria and that the country ‘has absolutely no right; it is our oil’.
She also cautioned there could be ‘popular opposition and operations against the American occupiers of our oil’.
Earlier this month, US President Donald Trump repeated his assertion that he ‘kept the oil’ inside Syrian territory.
The president proclaimed: ‘We can do with the oil that we want’ – although the Pentagon said last month that Syrian Democratic Forces were getting revenue generated by oil facilities occupied inside Syria.
A file photo from June 2016 shows Bouthaina Shaaban posing for a photo during an interview with Kyodo News in Damascus. Shaaban has accused the US of planning to steal Syrian oil
US President Donald Trump answers questions from reporters after making a video call to troops stationed worldwide at the Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach Florida on Tuesday. Trump previously said that ‘We can do with the oil what we want’, referring to the oil fields in northern Syria
Pictured: A view of the Al Omar Oil Field in Deir ez-Zor, Syria from July 19, 2018. In October, Trump abruptly withdrew the majority of the US Armed Forces from Syria. Shortly after, the Pentagon announced that 600 soldiers were staying put to guard the country’s oil fields
In October, Trump abruptly withdrew the majority of the US Armed Forces from Syria. Shortly after, the Pentagon announced that 600 soldiers were staying put to guard the country’s oil fields.
Shaaban told NBCnews that Assad felt Syria should be ‘totally and completely liberated from foreign occupiers’. She then listed ‘terrorists’, ‘Turks’, and ‘the Americans’ in this category.
Shaaban said the Syrian conflict, which has raged since 2011, was not targetted against Assad but against the country and its people.
Since the start of the war, more than 600,000 people have been killed. International rights’ groups have accused Assad of deploying chemical weapons against his people.
A handout photo shows Syrian President Bashar al-Assad during an interview on 28 November 2019. International rights’ groups have accused Assad of using chemical weapons against his own population during the eight year war which has ravaged through Syria
Now that ISIS have been driven from Syria and the last rebel stronghold in Idlib is surrounded by Syrian forces, the adviser said the process of rebuilding the war-ravaged country will begin.
However, she added that only nations friendly to Damascus during the war, like China and Russia, will be invited to help rebuild.
Today, Shaaban told the Daily Sabah that Syria has begun an oil and gas exploration project in the Mediterranean with Russian companies.