China says willing to team with Syria’s Assad in push to retake territory
Diplomat relays message that Chinese military ready to help ‘in some way’ as campaign moves north
China’s ambassador to Damascus has reportedly told Syrian media that Beijing is prepared to aid the government’s push to retake territory throughout the country.
Speaking to Syrian pro-government daily Al-Watan, the envoy, Qi Qianjin, expressed China’s support for what he referred to as Syria’s war against terrorists, according to a dispatch from the Middle East Media Research Institute.
Qi said he regretted that Chinese Uyghurs had participated in fighting against the government of President Bashar al-Assad, adding that the Chinese military was hoping to enhance relations with the Syrian military.
“Asked about the possibility that his country would take part in the Syrian Arab Army’s upcoming campaign against the terrorists in Idlib, especially in light of the presence of Uyghur fighters [there], [Qi] replied that China ‘is following the situation in Syria, in particular after the victory in southern [Syria], and its military is willing to participate in some way alongside the Syrian army that is fighting the terrorists in Idlib and in any other part of Syria,” the article from Al-Watan was translated as saying.
When asked about Chinese participation in the campaign, military attaché Wong Roy Chang said “‘the military cooperation between the Syrian and Chinese armies is ongoing. We have good relations and we maintain this cooperation in order to serve the security, integrity and stability of our countries. We – China and its military – wish to develop our relations with the Syrian Army. As for participating in the Idlib operation, it requires a political decision.’ He denied that there were military advisers or special Chinese forces in Syria today.”