A member of the UN commission of inquiry on Syria has supported Russia’s airstrikes against terrorist groups operating in the Arab country.
“I think the Russian intervention is a good thing, because finally someone is attacking these terrorist groups,” Carla Del Ponte told Swiss broadcaster RTS on Monday, listing the Daesh Takfiri group and the al-Qaeda-affiliated al-Nusra Front among the groups targeted.
However, Del Ponte, a former chief prosecutor of UN international criminal law tribunals, added that the Russians are not apparently “distinguishing enough between the terrorists and others.”
— Sputnik (@SputnikInt) February 9, 2016
High-ranking Russian officials have repeatedly said that they are targeting all terrorist groups in Syria, including Daesh, denying Western media reports that civilians have been killed in Russian airstrikes.
Russian airstrikes in Syria 'good thing,' says UN official Carla del Ponte who in 2013 accused rebels of using sarin https://t.co/1qBgN3cFeH
— Maya Gebeily (@GebeilyM) February 10, 2016
Moscow began its aerial military campaign against terrorists in Syria on September 30 last year upon a request from the Damascus government. Since then, it has killed hundreds of Daesh terrorists and other foreign-backed militants, and inflicted heavy material damage on them.
She went on to say that peace would only be established in Syria through negotiation with the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
“If you want a ceasefire, if you want peace, you first have to negotiate with the government,” the 68-year-old Swiss national said.
Syria has been gripped by a foreign-backed militancy since March 2011. The conflict has reportedly claimed the lives of over 260,000 people and displaced nearly half of the country’s pre-war population of about 23 million within or beyond its borders.