The chief of staff of the Free Syrian Army called Russian President Vladimir Putin a terrorist who’s simply trying to aid and abet his all Bashar al-Assad.
Brig. Gen. Salim Idris defected from Assad’s forces in July 2012 and was elected to lead the main opposition force to spring directly from the Arab Spring protests against Assad’s rule.
Asked on Fox News about Putin’s claim that rebels used the chemical weapons, Idris said, “I am very sorry to tell you that President Putin is lying.”
“And he was lying from the beginning of the revolution in Syria,” he continued. “He knows exactly that the regime is killing our citizens. He knows exactly that the regime is killing the civilians and is using the Russian weapons and ammunition and the Russian jets, the Russian tank T-72, and the Russian Scud missile to destroy all the liberated area to kill people everywhere.”
“And I am very sad to tell you that this man, President Putin, is a terrorist. And he is trying now to deceive the international community.”
Russia is Assad’s main arms supplier.
Idris said he’s “very thankful” that President Obama is considering helping the Syrians “who’ve been suffering for more than two years.”
“And, secondly, I would like to give you an assurance that any kind of support which we receive from our friends in the United States and our friends in Europe or our brothers in the Arabian region [will be used] to stop killing, to stop destruction of our country to build a democratic and free Syria for all of Syria.”
The general said a “light strike” as is talked about in Washington won’t do much other than stir the hornet’s nest, though.
“We’d like to see a very strong strike against Bashar al-Assad regime and the units of the regime and the Hezbollah units inside Syria to send a very clear and strong and forceful message to the Iranians and to Hezbollah fighters and to all extremist groups who are trying to terrorize the Syrian people and to put an end for the Syrian revolution,” Idris said.