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Moscow slams refusal to include Islamic State in sanction list as separate terrorist group

The West is trying to disclaim responsibility for the actions of Islamic State (IS), the Russian Foreign Ministry said on Friday, commenting on the refusal of the United States, Britain, France and Jordan to include IS in the sanction list as a separate terrorist group.

"In the UN Security Council's Al-Qaida Sanctions Committee the United States, Britain, France and Jordan have blocked Syria's request supported by Russia to include the Islamic State terrorist group (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant) in the sanction list as a separate group (currently it's mentioned as one of al-Qaeda's names in Iraq)," the Russian Foreign Ministry says.

"The Americans and their supporters insist on renaming of Al-Qaeda in Iraq Islamic State in the sanction list, which, according to available information, would not reflect the true state of affairs," the ministry noted. "Washington's argument that Al-Qaeda in Iraq has transformed into Islamic State and ceased to exist as Al-Qaeda's branch in Iraq seems groundless." The United States says that Al-Qaeda in Iraq has already been renamed the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant in the State Department sanction list, citing this fact as one of the main arguments in favor of its stance at the United Nations."

The political implications of such a move are clear - "to disclaim responsibility for the expansion of the scope of activities of Islamic State and to prove that this is not a new movement, which appeared as a result of nursing schemes to overthrow Syria's President Bashar al-Assad, but the old-time Al-Qaeda in Iraq, so the anti-Assad coalition bears neither moral nor political responsibility for it," the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

The Russian side cannot agree with that, the Ministry said, reminding that Al-Qaeda in Iraq was formed following the US invasion of the country in 2003.

[Source: Itar Tass, Moscow, 10Apr15]

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