Bouthaina Shaaban, envoy of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, speaks during an interview in Beijing August 15, 2012. REUTERS/Stringer/CHINA
BEIRUT - 15 September 2017: A top aide to President Bashar al-Assad said on Friday the Syrian government would fight any force, including U.S.-backed forces also battling Islamic State militants, in its drive to recapture the whole of the country.
"Whether it's the Syrian Democratic Forces, or Daesh (Islamic State) or any illegitimate foreign force in the country ... we will fight and work against them so our land is freed completely from any aggressor," Bouthaina Shaaban said in an interview with Hezbollah's Al Manar TV.
Shaaban said the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) had captured areas from Islamic State "without any fighting", apparently accusing them of collusion with the jihadists.