Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi has called on the US-led coalition, which is allegedly providing air-support in the battle for Mosul, to stop Daesh terrorists escaping the city and relocating in Syria.
"It is the responsibility of the coalition to cut the road to Syria for Daesh," he was quoted on Iraqi television as saying on Tuesday.
He also announced that Iraqi forces engaged in the battle have been ordered to avoid operations that may harm civilians and to secure them safe passage out of the city.
Abadi made the remark after the Syrian army’s General Command warned that the supporters of international terrorism are attempting to secure safe passage for the terrorists into Syria, which has been dealing with a foreign backed conflict since March 2011 -- a crisis that reportedly has claimed the lives of 400,000 people.
US, Saudi malicious scheme
In a Tuesday statement, the Syrian army warned of a “malicious scheme” by the US and Saudi Arabia to provide safe routes for the groupings of Takfiri terrorists, who are fleeing the offensive against the city.
It warned that Damascus regards any attempt at crossing into its borders as “an attack on the sovereignty of the Syrian Arab Republic,” stressing that those who attempt to do so would be regarded as terrorists and would be dealt with accordingly.
Earlier, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov warned that Moscow may take "political and military" decisions if the Daesh terrorists were redeployed to eastern Syria.
“I hope the US-led coalition, which is actively engaged in the operation to take Mosul, will take it into account,” he said. "As far as I know, the city is not fully encircled. I hope it’s because they simply couldn’t do it, not because they wouldn’t do it. But this corridor poses a risk that Daesh could flee from Mosul and go to Syria."
Last week, Russia's RIA Novosti news agency quoted an unnamed diplomatic source as saying that the US and Saudi Arabia had agreed to grant Daesh terrorists free passage from Iraq’s Mosul on the condition that they relocate to the eastern regions of Syria.
The source said the plan seeks "to discredit the success of the Russian Air Force. And, of course, it’s an attempt to undermine Syrian President (Bashar) al-Assad.”
Iraqi government troops, together with Sunni fighters and Shia forces from Popular Mobilization Units, and Kurdish Peshmerga fighters, are currently involved in a massive offensive to liberate Mosul, the last major Daesh stronghold in Iraq.