BEIRUT, LEBANON – The new commander of Iran’s Quds Force, Brigadier General Esmail Ghaani, has reportedly visited Aleppo, marking the first time he has visited Syria since the death of General Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad on January 3rd.
In an exclusive interview with the Mehr News Agency, a member of the Syrian National Reconciliation Committee, Omar Rahmon, revealed Ghaani’s visit to Aleppo, calling it a show of support to the Syrian government and Resistance Axis after the Turkish military’s attack.
“The new Quds Force commander’s visit to the southwestern suburbs of Aleppo shows Iran’s stance in its support for Syria in the fight against terrorism till the whole Syrian territory is freed. This is not a new issue and Iran had adopted the same position from the beginning. Some people assumed that after the martyrdom of Lt. General Soleimani we would witness a decline in Iran’s support, but the visit of Commander Ghaani suggests something else,” he said.
Referring to the recent meeting of the Turkish and Russian presidents, he said, “The only outcome of the meeting was the ceasefire that Erdogan called for. He demands a ceasefire only to reorganize his defeated troops in Syria and receive US support for the rest of the battle in Idlib. Turkey’s strategy after the meeting with Moscow indicates the same plan because arms supplies and servicemen are still being dispatched to Idlib even after talks with the Russian officials.”
“Erdogan is targeting the headquarters of the Resistance Forces to provoke a response from Iran and then receive the support of the Islamic and Arab world. However, this strategy is not working and no one believes in it,” he added.
Ghaani was considered one of Soleimani’s closest confidants and a key figure in the Quds Force, as he has made several trips to both Syria and Iraq over the last decade.