- Iran Tells US to Get Out of Syria, Whether It Wants to Or Not
by AGENCIES and TOI STAFF, https://www.timesofisrael.com/
After Trump’s criticism of Islamic Republic during State of the Union, Tehran’s foreign minister accuses Washington of supporting ‘butchers & extremists’
Tehran reacted ferociously on Wednesday to US President Donald Trump’s criticism of Iran in his annual State of the Union speech, with a top general saying US troops must leave Syria and the foreign minister charging that Washington supports “dictators, butchers and extremists” in the Middle East.
“Whether they want to or not, the Americans must leave Syria,” said Ali Akbar Velayati, a senior adviser to Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, according to the Reuters news agency citing Iran’s Tasnim news agency.
“Now 90 percent of Syrian soil is under the control of the government and the rest will soon be freed by the Syrian army,” he added during a meeting with Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem in Tehran.
Trump last month claimed the Islamic State terror group had been defeated in Syria and said all US troops were “coming back now.” The US president had long questioned America’s multiple and seemingly interminable wars, but his withdrawal order came as a shock to Washington, upending years of doctrine in Syria. Despite Trump’s decision, the US still has 2,000 or so troops in Syria and only non-essential gear has been pulled.