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The collapse of the latest Syrian ceasefire brokered by Russia and the United States has heightened the possibility that Gulf states might provide arms to radical groups. Dr. Taleb Ibrahim, Deputy Director of Damascus center for International and Strategic Studies, told Sputnik that Syrian rebels have already received weapons from Sunni monarchies.

“I think [weapons] will possibly come from Qatar, Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates (UAE),” he said, adding that in fact, they have already been delivered. The analyst also noted that it was just a matter of time when the Gulf states “give permission to Syrian terrorists – they call them moderates, but we know that they are real terrorists – to use” the weapons.

Dr. Taleb Ibrahim also said that the US has ostensibly provided the BGM-71 TOW anti-tank missiles and night vision equipment to the militants trying to overthrow President Bashar al-Assad. The latter is “critical” with regard to the Syrian conflict since radical groups mostly launch attacks at night.

Behind the Scenes: ‘Something Very Serious Transpired Between Russia and US Over Syria’ The analyst added that the militants seem to have “very advanced communications.”  Dr. Taleb Ibrahim further said that “there are no moderates on the ground” in Syria, but rather groups affiliated with al-Nusra Front or al-Qaeda. He cited Ahrar al-Sham, an organisation that Russia, unlike the US, considers to be a terrorist group, as an example.

“Ahrar al-Sham is a part of al-Qaeda. The founder of Ahrar al-Sham [Hassan Aboud was] a top member of al-Qaeda. Other groups are the same. So I think that the US is lying and there is a kind of harsh hypocrisy” since the US, the Gulf states and others “know very well that there are no moderates on the ground,” he said.

In the analyst’s opinion, the United States and the Gulf states want to provide weapons to al-Qaeda, but they cannot do this openly. This is why they came up with the term “moderates” which they use as an “excuse to justify their acts in working shoulder to shoulder with al-Qaeda.”

Dr. Taleb Ibrahim also noted that the US could restore peace in Syria. “If the United States really wants to put an end to the war and fight terrorism,” Washington should simply “call Turkish President [Recep Tayyip Erdogan] and Saudi King [Salman]” and ask them to “stop financing and supporting the militants,” the analyst said. “In a few days those militants should vanish.”

Read more: https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/20160928/1045776180/gulf-weapons-syrian-rebels.html