Russian President Vladimir Putin said that when making decisions in the Syrian direction, he is guided by the interests of Russia, rather than personal sympathies and antipathies.
"When making decisions of this kind, I am not referring now to the flight, of course, but to decisions in the Syrian direction, I am guided primarily not by my sympathies and antipathies, but by the interests of the Russian state," the Russian leader said in an interview for the documentary film "No Right to Error. A Christmas Visit to Damascus" by Yevgeny Poddubny. A fragment of the conversation was shown in the program "Vesti" on the TV channel "Russia-1".
The Russian leader noted that the decisions made in this direction were correct, as the practice of recent years has proved it. "We then felt that there was a growing threat, a terrorist threat, from the territory of Syria, because the bandit militias had seized almost all Syrian territory and were strengthening in Syria," he added. The head of state also stressed that "so far, despite the fact that professional bandit formations have been defeated, the threat is still <...> coming from those territories that are still under terrorist control."
Putin visited Damascus on January 7, 2020. He visited the command post of the Russian Armed Forces, where he held talks with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. The head of state also toured the Syrian capital, visiting the St. Mary's Orthodox Church and the Umayyad Mosque, one of the oldest in the world.
The armed conflict in the Arab republic has been ongoing since 2011. At the end of 2017, Russia announced the defeat of the terrorist group Islamic State (outlawed in Russia) in Syria and Iraq. In some parts of the country, mop-ups of militants continue. The focus now is on a political settlement, the reconstruction of Syria, and the return of refugees.
GSV "Russia - Islamic World"
Photo: official website of the President of RF
Based on materias RIA Novosti, TASS