Syrian Government Denounces UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon as ‘Biased’
In an interview with The Daily Telegraph in Damascus, Faisal Mukdad, the deputy foreign minister and senior government spokesman, claimed most of those rebelling against Bashar al-Assad’s rule were “criminals and drug-dealers”.
Rejecting any blame for the apparent collapse of the ceasefire deal, he insisted it was the rebels who were “escalating their attacks” and that the Syrian regime had the right to defend itself.
He also claimed the United States and France were openly trying to ensure the peace plan’s failure, with the French foreign minister Alain Juppe, in particular, “calling for war”.
“This is what the West wants - extremist and al-Qaeda forces controlling the whole region,” he said.
Mr Mukdad’s message of defiance came shortly after two huge bomb blasts hit the restive town of Idlib, killing as many as 20 people and shattering the relative calm that had pervaded the city since the recent arrival of two UN peace monitors.