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Assad blames U.S. for Syria truce collapse

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    Syrian President Bashar Assad speaks to The Associated Press at the presidential palace in Damascus, Syria. Assad said U.S. airstrikes on Syrian troops in the country’s east were “definitely intentional,” lasting for an hour, and blamed the U.S. for the collapse of a cease-fire deal brokered with Russia.

DAMASCUS, Syria >> Syrian President Bashar Assad says U.S. airstrikes on Syrian troops in the country’s east were “definitely intentional,” lasting for an hour, and blamed the U.S. for the collapse of a cease-fire deal brokered with Russia.

In an interview with The Associated Press, Assad said the war, now in its sixth year, is likely to “drag on” because of what he said was continued external support for his opponents.

Assad, in the interview conducted Wednesday, said the U.S. “doesn’t have the will” to join Russia in fighting Islamic militants in Syria.

The Syrian president rejected accusations that Syrian or Russian planes struck an aid convoy in Aleppo and denied that his troops were preventing food from entering the rebel-held part of the city.

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