During a speech at an emergency UN Security Council meeting called by Russia to discuss the deadly airstrikes delivered by the US-led coalition, US Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power said that Moscow’s representative should be “embarrassed” for her words suggesting that the strike indicated that Washington is defending Islamic State (IS, former ISIS, ISIL) terrorists.
According to the Russian Foreign Ministry, the strike near the eastern city of Deir ez-Zor that killed 62 Syrian soldiers bordered between “gross negligence” and “direct assistance” to IS.
In response to Power’s accusations, Maria Zakharova wrote on Facebook: “Dear Samantha Power, in order to know the meaning of the word “embarrassed,” I highly encourage you to travel to Syria and talk to the people there for yourself. And by that I do not mean the Al-Nusra Front militants, nor the moderate opposition, whose humanitarian situation Washington seems to be so worried about. I likewise am not referring to the Western warriors for justice for Syria. I’m referring to the actual people that continue to live there in spite of the bloody experiment that has been waged on their homeland for over six years, with active participation by Washington.”
The Moscow representative went on to say she herself is in constant communication with people on the ground, which includes both opposition forces dispersed across Syrian towns, and the orphaned children left in the wake of the fighting there.
“Let’s go there together,” she said, promising she would shoulder the expenses of Power’s Syria trip.
“Do say yes. Don’t be frightened. Nobody will lay a finger on you in my presence. Unless, of course, your guys don’t again ‘mistakenly’ strike the wrong target. You’ll make lots of new memories. And find out what ‘embarrassed’ means in the process,” the Moscow representative added.
Russia’s Ministry of Defense said on Saturday that four air strikes had been carried out by the US-led anti-ISIS coalition near Deir ez-Zor, where Syrian units had been surrounded by IS terrorists.
Russian Permanent Representative to the United Nations Vitaly Churkin had questioned the “joint efforts” the two countries were to undertake to stabilize the violent situation and ensure delivery of humanitarian aid to besieged areas.
Accompanying the Joint Implementation Group (JIG) document signed by both parties to streamline cooperation on the ground, Churkin issued the following statement:
“The beginning of work of the Joint Implementation Group was supposed to be September 19. So if the US wanted to conduct an effective strike on Al-Nusra or ISIS, in Deir ez-Zor or anywhere else, they could wait two more days and coordinate with our military and be sure that they are striking the right people.”
“Instead they chose to conduct this reckless operation,” Churkin said. “So it may well be, one has to conclude, that the airstrike has been conducted in order to derail the operation of the Joint Implementation Group and actually prevent it from being set in motion,” Churkin said. “It may well be that the United States is trying to hide the fact that they are actually not in control of the situation, that they allowed the situation to get out of control.”