by WorldTribune Staff, February 10, 2017
There are terrorists among the waves of refugees that have fled Syria, President Bashar Assad said on Feb. 9.
Assad, in an exclusive interview with Yahoo News at a presidential office in Damascus, said U.S. President Donald Trump’s executive order that temporarily banned refugees from Syria “is an American issue” on which he would not take sides.
But asked if some of those who fled are “aligned with terrorists,” Assad quickly replied, “definitely.”
“You can find it on the Net,” Assad said. “Those terrorists in Syria, holding the machine gun or killing people, they [appear as] peaceful refugees in Europe or in the West.”
Assad said he couldn’t estimate how many terrorists are hidden among the refugees, but he added that “you don’t need a significant number to commit atrocities.”
He noted that the 9/11 attacks were pulled off by fewer than 20 terrorists “out of maybe millions of immigrants in the United States. So it’s not about the number, it’s about the quality, it’s about the intentions.”
As for the future of Syria’s refugees, Assad said, “for me, the priority is to bring those citizens to their country, not to help them immigrate.”