Although he is no fan of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, a Russian ally, Netanyahu knows that without the secular Assad in power, Damascus would be overrun by jihadists, who would be even less welcome along Israel’s northern border.
Human Rights Syrian Observatory, a monitoring group, added new Russian deployment was being put into action effectively, and 38 IS fighters killed in air strikes in insurgents-held towns in central Syria.
“As regards Syria, we call for a renewed UN-led worldwide effort to bring an end to the war that has caused so much suffering and forced an estimated 12 million people to leave their homes”, the summit statement said.
Israel and Russia agreed to a create mechanism to prevent accidental confrontation between their forces in Syria, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said following a meeting on the outskirts of Moscow Monday with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Russia’s drone operations appeared to be staged out of an air base near Latakia, where it has moved other heavy military equipment, beyond fixed-wing aircraft, including helicopter gunships, artillery, tanks and naval infantry forces, officials said. Russia, which has exploited weakness in U.S. foreign policy to re-gain the military foothold in Egypt it lost in 1979, is seen as putting significant energy into expanding its presence in the region. Recently, Moscow has also deployed at least five combat aircraft for reconnaissance and also military equipment to Syria.
“The fact that they … have additional military capabilities in Syria continues to give us concern, and that’s why we’re in favor of some level of military-to-military communication for the objective of deconfliction”, State Department spokesman John Kirby said Monday. Russia, however, has condemned the Syrian resistance in the aftermath of an alleged attack on the Russian Embassy in Damascus.
Experts said it was unlikely the aircraft were only for defensive purposes.
US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter and Sergei Shoigu, his Russian counterpart, spoke Friday about the escalation of Russian involvement.
Moscow’s steadfast support of the Assad regime has put Russian Federation at odds with the USA over how to respond to the Syrian civil war, now in its fifth year.