one of the nights of the last week of last June, the Syrian security
forces imposed strict measures inside and around Damascus
International Airport. Just before midnight, a private UAE plane
landed on one of the runways.
forty minutes passed before a huge procession of black Four-Wheel
vehicles took off carrying the passengers to the Mezzeh area, in the
center of Damascus, where the new office of Major General Ali
Mamlouk, director of Syria’s National Security Bureau is located.
a senior US officer led a delegation that included officers from
several US intelligence and security agencies. Ali Mamlouk welcomed
the visiting delegation, along with the head of the General
Intelligence Directorate, Major General Deeb Zeitoun, and the Deputy
Chief of the General Staff, Major General Mowafaq Asaad.
meeting between the two sides continued for four hours. What
to information obtained by the Lebanese «Al-Akhbar» newspaper, the
two sides reviewed the various aspects of the Syrian crisis and its
stages of development and repercussions in the region, before talking
to the most important topic.
American side made a clear and specific offer: The United States is
ready to withdraw its troops completely from Syrian territory,
including the Al-Tanf and Eastern Euphrates according to security
arrangements supervised by the Russian and Syrian armies. In
exchange for three US demands:
full withdrawal from the Syrian south.
obtain written guarantees that give US companies a share of the oil
sector in the regions of eastern Syria.
Syrian side to provide the Americans with full data of the terrorist
groups and their members, including the numbers of foreign fighter
deads of these groups and those who survived, and those may return to
Western countries, considering that «the terrorist threat is
intercontinental. And what we can get, serve the international
a cool mind, the Syrian side dealt with the American visitors and
their “tempting” offer. The answer to the three points was also
are an occupying power in Syria, you entered our territory forcibly
without permission and you can go out in the same way. Until that
happens, we will continue to treat you as an occupying power.
is not alone in the region; it is part of a broad axis. Our position
on the relationship with Iran is clear, and President Bashar al-Assad
has repeated on more than one occasion and a speech that our alliance
with Tehran, Hezbollah and allied forces that fought the terrorists
alongside the Syrian army is «a strong relationship, and this offer
does not change our fixed alliances».
priority after the war is to cooperate with allied and friendly
countries that have not conspired against the Syrian people, and we
will not give facilities to the companies of the countries that
fought us and still».
Mamlouk added, «This can be left to a later stage when the Syrian
government determines the policy of reconstruction. And then can US
companies enter the Syrian energy sector through Western or Russian
companies. We consider this a gesture of goodwill in response to your
regard to the data of terrorist groups, Mamlouk told his visitors
that «about a year ago, the deputy head of Australian intelligence
visited me here in Damascus. He confirmed that his visit was
conducted with your knowledge, that he was, to some extent,
representing you, and asked for information about Australian
Islamists of Arab origin who were fighting in the ranks of terrorist
groups. And I will repeat to you now what I answered him that day:
Today we have a huge information infrastructure for the terrorist
groups, and this has evolved dramatically during the years of the
crisis. We are fully aware of the dangers that these people pose to
us and to you. We are aware of the extent to which you need this
information, and we know that it is essential for the security
services to stay in touch even during crises. We have already
provided information to the Jordanians and to many other countries,
including the United Arab Emirates. But our position on this matter
today depends on the evolution of your political position from Syria
and its government and army. Therefore, Syria will not provide any
cooperation or security coordination with you in this regard before
reaching stable political relations between the two countries».
meeting ended with the agreement to keep the communication going
through the Russian-Emirati channel, before heading to Damascus
International Airport, to leave the same way they came.