The New Arab Logo

Breaking News
Russia would consider sending troops to Syria if required Open in fullscreen

The New Arab & agencies

Russia would consider sending troops to Syria if required

Moallem said Russian troops were not yet needed [Getty]

Date of publication: 18 September, 2015

Share this page:
  • 0

  • twitter
Russia is willing to send troops to help Syria if required, a presidential spokesman said, while further evidence has emerged of Russian troops active in Syria.

Russia would consider sending troops to fight in Syria if Damascus asked for them, Presidential Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Friday, as fresh evidence emerged of Russian troops active in Syria.

However Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem said Russian troops were not yet needed.


"What we frankly need is more ammunition and qualitative weapons to face the qualitative armament of terrorist groups," Moallem said in an interview on Syrian television broadcast late on Thursday.


New evidence of a Russian troop presence

The soldier was wearing a standard Russian army camouflage uniform, sitting on an armoured signals vehicle

Meanwhile, a photograph has emerged of a Russian soldier in an armoured vehicle accompanied by Syrian troops in Syria's coastal region on Wednesday.


The soldier was wearing a standard Russian army camouflage uniform and was sitting on a R-166-0.5 armoured signals vehicle, accompanied by Syrian National Defence Force personnel, the open-source journalism website Bellingcat reported on Wednesday.


The photos also show that the identification number of the rear of the vehicle has been painted over, standard practice of the Russian army during the Ukraine conflict.


The site reported the R-166-0.5 provides a unit the capability to communicate securely over a long distance. A Russian battalion will normally be equipped with eight of these signals vehicles.


The R-166-0.5 is reportedly capable of supporting mobile communications at a distance of up to 25 kilometres via UHF (ultra-high frequency) and 250 kilometres via HF (High frequency), and far more stationary with its antennae deployed.


Its presence in Syria indicates Russia is looking beyond the narrow deployments of its military personnel to its Tartous naval base and Bassel al-Assad (Hmeemeem) air force base near Lattakia.


Recent reports have indicated that Russian speakers have been fighting alongside Syrian NDF personnel, though it was not clear if they were actually Russian soldiers.


Russian unmanned aerial vehicles have also been deployed in Syria for reconnaissance purposes.


Turkish sources have indicated that large numbers of Russian supply ships have transited the Bosphorus Straights over recent weeks, and Bellingcat reported that Antonov military transport aircraft had made at least 15 flights to the Bassel al-Assad air force base.

The New ArabComments

Most Popular

Most Popular

    Read More