US action in Syria without consent would be `attack`: Minister

AFP| Last Updated: Sep 11, 2014, 19:20 PM IST

US air strikes on Syrian territory without permission from the government in Damascus would be an "attack" on the country, a Syrian minister said Thursday.

"Any action of any kind without the consent of the Syrian government would be an attack on Syria," National Reconciliation Minister Ali Haidar said when asked about US plans to widen its operations against Islamic State (IS) jihadists with air strikes on Syrian territory.

Haidar refused to be drawn on what response Syrian might have to any unilateral US military action on the country`s territory.

"But under international law there must be cooperation and cooperation with Syria and Syrian consent for any action, whether military or non-military on Syrian territory," he added.

His comments followed a speech in which US President Barack Obama pledged a "relentless" war against IS, including air strikes in Syria and support for Syrian rebels.

Syria`s government, engaged in a war against rebels seeking to overthrow it, has tried to present itself as a partner for the international community in the fight against IS and radical jihadists

But Washington backs the rebels and has made it clear it will not cooperate with President Bashar al-Assad`s government against IS.