By Times of Israel—
Syrian President Bashar Assad on Thursday charged that all the forces it has been fighting during the country’s eight-year civil war were “tools serving Israel directly or through the Americans,” and said he doesn’t recognize the existence of the modern-day nation of Israel.
In a wide-ranging prerecorded interview on state television, Assad also cast doubt over the assassination of terror chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, defended talks with Turkey, and said Israel “has never been absent” from the Syrian battlefield.
“We fight its proxies, agents, flunkies or tools, in different ways, some military some political,” he said, according to a translation by SANA. “They are all tools serving Israel directly or through the Americans. Israel is in fact a main partner in what is happening, and as an enemy state, that is expected. Will it stand by and watch? No. It will be proactive, and more effective in order to strike at Syria, the Syrian people, the Syrian homeland and everything related to Syria.
Asked if Israel was benefiting from recent developments, in which Turkey invaded the north of the country, Assad said: “This is self-evident. Even if we do not discuss it, it is one of our national givens in Syria.”
Assad said he did not want to make an “enemy” of neighboring Turkey despite the stand-off between their forces in the north of the country, and explained why he was willing to meet and negotiate with Ankara, as an occupying force, but not with Jerusalem. Continue Reading….