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Russia supports US anti-terror work in Syria

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MOSCOW: Russia has said it supports the anti-terrorism stance of the United States after a Daesh leader was killed in an American raid, in a rare conciliatory gesture amid heightened tensions between Washington and Moscow over Ukraine. 

“We support the efforts of other countries, including members of the US-led international coalition, in the anti-terrorist direction,” Moscow’s foreign ministry said in a statement on Thursday, while also calling for a “thorough investigation” should civilian casualties in the US raid be confirmed. 

President Joe Biden said a global “terrorist threat” was removed when the head of the Daesh blew himself up after US special forces swooped down on his Syrian hideout in an “incredibly challenging” nighttime helicopter raid.

The death of Abu Ibrahim al-Hashimi al-Qurashi is the biggest setback to Daesh since his predecessor, the better-known Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, was killed in a US commando raid in the same Syrian region of Idlib in 2019.

The leader died when he blew himself and family members up during the raid, President Joe Biden said, dealing a blow to the terrorist group’s efforts to reorganize as a guerrilla force after losing large swathes of territory.

Moscow said it was “ready to cooperate with all interested countries in the interests of establishing a joint effective response to this common threat (terrorism).”

It said Russia had “made a decisive contribution” to fighting terrorism in Syria. 

The Russian army intervened in the Syrian civil war on the side of President Bashar al-Assad’s regime.

Tensions between Moscow and the West have skyrocketed in recent weeks, with Washington accusing the Kremlin of planning an invasion of Ukraine. 

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