Russian Federation says didn't promise withdrawal of pro-Iranian forces from Syria


It seems that Israel is clearly dissatisfied with the agreement, since even before Lavrov's announcement, Netanyahu said on Monday, "I have clarified to our friends in Washington and our friends in Moscow that we will operate in Syria, including southern Syria, in accordance with our understanding and in accordance with our security needs".

Israeli daily Haaretz reported that in their meetings the United States officials will address Iran's influence and the situation in southern Syria. The distance would range from as little as 5-7 kilometers (3-4 miles) to around 30 kilometers (18 miles), depending on current rebel positions in the Syrian controlled area of the Golan Heights, the official told Reuters on condition of anonymity.

According to the official version of the agreement signed over the weekend, all foreign forces, including the Iranian Revolutionary Guards and the Iran-affiliated Shiite militias-most notably Hezbollah, must leave Syrian territory. Officials have pushed for assurances from the global community that any Iranian-backed forces remain far from Israel's border.

"We are writing to express our concerns regarding Iranian presence in Syria".

The map was shown to the AP by an Israeli official.

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Israel media published on Monday that IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eizenkot traveled secretly to Brussels and convened with US General Curtis Scaparrotti to discuss Iranian acts in the Middle East, generally, and Syria, specifically. This includes the expansion of a truce in the southwestern Syrian region which borders Israel and Jordan.

"A permanent Iranian presence in Syria would connect Lebanon-based Hezbollah to Iran via Iraq and Syria".

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that the presence of Iran in Syria is "legitimate", according to Russia's Interfax news agency.

"The IDF is well prepared and ready for any scenario, we are maintaining our total freedom of operation, and the only consideration guiding us is the security of the State of Israel", he said. He added that "there was no talk about Iran or, moreover, pro-Iranian forces".