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Syria Says Israel and Turkey Collaborating to Support Rebels

Syria's ambassador to the UN accuses the governments of Turkey and Israel of working together to support the rebels.
By Elad Benari, Canada
First Publish: 3/29/2014, 1:11 AM

Syrian rebels take positions in Aleppo
Syrian rebels take positions in Aleppo
Reuters

Syria's ambassador to the United Nations, Bashar Al-Ja’afari, on Friday accused the governments of Turkey and Israel of a "public alliance of supporting terrorism" in his country, the Turkish Cihan news agency reports.

“Terrorists” is the word that the Syrian regime uses to describe the rebels fighting to oust Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad.

Speaking to reporters outside of the Security Council headquarters, Ja’afari claimed that both countries were supporting the same terrorists, "one in the north and one in the south."

“It is an orchestrated joint military operations conducted by both - the Turkish government and the Israeli government - as well as the terrorist groups operating both in the north, in our border with Turkey, as well as in the south, next to the separation line," he claimed, according to Cihan.

Ja’afari claimed that "the Turkish government has facilitated the intrusion of Al-Nusra Front fighters, which is a terrorist entity - as you know-  enlisted on the Security Council's list on entities posing terrorism. So, these terrorists came from within Turkish territory and they were accompanied by other terrorists belonging to what is called the Islamic Army or the Islam Army or the Army of Islam – whatever - I don't know how they call themselves, but all them are terrorists, well-known terrorist entities, who came inside Syria through our border with Turkey."

“Once the Syrian Army tried to stop these terrorists, the Turkish Army intervened by shelling the area of Kasab, as well as the Syrian Army position,” he charged.

On Sunday, Syria accused the Turkish government of shooting down a Syrian jet fighter in their territory. Turkish officials said the plane had crossed over into Turkish airspace.

Turkey is a vocal critic of Assad and has openly supported the rebels fighting his regime, but has always denied arming them.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has been especially vocal about ousting Assad, branding him “a terrorist who uses state terror”. After a chemical weapons attack near Damascus in August, Erdogan called for military intervention in Syria that would topple Assad’s regime.

The heightened tensions between Turkey and Syria have led to several cross-border incidents, including the explosion of a Syrian mortar in Turkish territory, which killed five civilians.

Ja’afari also said that armies of terrorists were infiltrating through Syria’s border with Israel, underlining that supporting terrorists was a way of weakening the Syrian government and the Syrian army, according to Cihan.

The accusations come several weeks after Assad’s close adviser accused Israel of being involved in the ongoing fighting in the country.

Bouthaina Shaaban, political and media adviser to the Syrian President, claimed that Israel was sending fighters to help the rebels fighting to oust Assad.

Speaking to the Lebanese Al-Mayadeen network, which is affiliated with Hezbollah, Shaaban said that Damascus has information indicating that there were undercover agents among the wounded Syrians recently treated by Israel.

She further claimed that Israeli officers are operating in Syria and monitoring the fighting in the war-torn country.

Assad himself told an Argentinean newspaper a few months ago that Israel is assisting the rebels fighting to topple his regime.

“Israel is directly supporting the terrorist groups in two ways,” he claimed. “Firstly it gives them logistical support, and it also tells them what sites to attack and how to attack them."

The Syrian opposition, however, has claimed the exact opposite, that Israel was collaborating with Iran and Hezbollah to keep Assad in power.

(Arutz Sheva’s North American Desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)