Spokesman: Iran to stay in Syria as long as needed

Spokesman: Iran to stay in Syria as long as needed

Russian President Vladimir Putin's remarks that foreign troops must withdraw from Syria after the start of the political settlement phase have been clarified by a Kremlin spokesman, Ad-Dustour has reported.

"Should the Syrians want us, we will continue to be there", Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qasemi told a press conference in Tehran cited by the official IRNA news agency.

The spokesman went on to say that within the framework of the first joint commission of the JCPOA, which is expected to be held without the U.S. presence in the coming days at Iran's request, Tehran and the remaining sides will only discuss the JCPOA and the issues related to the deal.

Smoke rises after Syrian government airstrikes and shelling hit in Hajar al-Aswad neighbourhood held by Islamic State militants, southern Damascus, Syria.

Heavy explosions were heard Sunday overnight south of Damascus in Syria in an area which holds a security facility used by Iranian forces, Sky News in Arabic reported.

Tel Aviv has claimed that its assault was a response to a barrage of 20 rockets fired from Syria at Israeli military outposts in the occupied Golan Heights which it blamed on Iran.

World War 3 Middle East rivals Israel Iran Syria
GettyIsraeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu sad:”Whoever hurts us we will hurt him sevenfold

The gains by President Bashar Assad's troops bring greater Damascus - including the capital's far-flung suburbs - fully under government control for the first time since the civil war began in 2011.

In a statement, the Syrian army announced that "Damascus, its outskirts and surrounding towns are completely secure".

The camp was deserted by most of its inhabitants after years of siege, and the few remaining residents fled to nearby areas in the last days of the bombardment. State TV showed images of troops moving in, waving the Syrian flag and flashing victory signs atop wrecked buildings in the destroyed neighborhood.

With Iran's help, Assad's forces have been making steady gains since 2015, when Russian Federation launched an air campaign on behalf of his forces.

The Syrian regime fully reclaimed Damascus on Monday after Daesh terrorists - and some civilians - were evacuated from the Yarmouk refugee camp as part of a deal between the regime and the terrorist group.

Iranian officials have vowed to stay on in Syria for as long as needed, setting the stage for a potential confrontation, as Washington seeks to tighten the screws on Tehran after the USA withdrawal from the 2015 Iran nuclear deal brokered with Iran under President Barack Obama and world powers.

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