The Russian Ministry of Defense accused the U.S. on Tuesday of deliberately reducing its air strikes in Iraq to allow ISIS terrorists to move into Syria to slow down Russia-backed Bashar al-Assad’s army’s advance.
Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said:
"Everyone sees that the U.S.-led coalition is pretending to fight Islamic State, above all in Iraq, but continuing to allegedly fight Islamic State in Syria actively for some reason.
The actions of the Pentagon and the coalition demand an explanation. Is their change of tack a desire to complicate as much as they can the Syrian army’s operation, backed by the Russian air force, to take back Syrian territory to the east of the Euphrates?
Or is it an artful move to drive Islamic State terrorists out of Iraq by forcing them into Syria and into the path of the Russian air force’s pinpoint bombing?"
The Pentagon has denied the allegations. Spokesman Col. Robert Manning said:
"We remain committed to killing ISIS and denying them safe havens and the ability to carry out strikes in the region or globally."
He added that the U.S.-led coalition fighting Islamic State posts data every day on the number and result of strikes for the public to see.