Russia changing stance on backing for Assad?

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President Bashar al-Assad of Syria and President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia met in Moscow on Tuesday to discuss the military operations in Syria. By REUTERS on Publish Date October 21, 2015. Photo by Alexey Druzhinin/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images.
President Bashar al-Assad of Syria and President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia met in Moscow on Tuesday to discuss the military operations in Syria. By REUTERS on Publish Date October 21, 2015. Photo by Alexey Druzhinin/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images.
A Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman said on Tuesday that Moscow does not consider it a matter of principle that Syrian President Bashar Assad should stay in power, seemingly stepping back from its previous position of strong support for him.

Asked whether it was crucial for Moscow that Assad stays, Maria Zakharov said on the Ekho Moskvy radio station: “Absolutely not, we’ve never said that.”

“What we did say is a regime change in Syria could become a local or even regional catastrophe,” she said, adding that “only the Syrian people can decide the president’s fate.”

Not long after the remarks were made, Zakharov sought to clarify them with another Russian media outlet; “I can confirm that Russia’s position on resolving the Syrian (crisis) has not changed,” she said.

Russia is believed to be Assad’s strongest backer and has previously balked at the West’s suggestions that the Syrian president should be ousted.

Russia in September began carrying out airstrikes against opposition fighters in Syria. While Moscow initially said its focus would be militants of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), it quickly became apparent that the primary targets were other rebel groups closing in on Assad’s strongholds — including some groups backed by the U.S.

Earlier on Tuesday, Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov told Russian news agencies that Moscow is aiming to host a round of talks between Syrian officials and opposition leaders next week.

Bogdanov said the Syrian government has agreed to participate, but that it is unclear which opposition groups might come. He did not give a specific date for the proposed talks.

The talks are expected to be discussed Wednesday at a meeting between Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and U.N. Syrian envoy Staffan de Mistura, Bogdanov said.

Assad made a surprise visit to Moscow last month, which was viewed as a signal that Russia ultimately seeks a political settlement after weeks of heavy airstrikes in Syria, although the terms of such an arrangement are uncertain.

Russia’s National interest
IRGC Commander Major General Mohammad Ali Jafari reaffirmed during a November 2 meeting with Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and other Iranian diplomats Iran’s commitment to Syrian President Bashar al Assad.

Jafari, however, acknowledged that Russia’s goals in Syria might differ from Iran’s regarding Assad, stating: “Our dear friend to the north, which has now come to Syria and is helping militarily, is pursuing its own national interests; it is possible… that [Russia] is not looking for Assad to remain. In any case, [Russia] has arrived…and it is helping the resistance front.” He added.

CBS/AEI

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166 responses to “Russia changing stance on backing for Assad?”

  1. arzatna1 Avatar

    Look at that handshake.
    How far can far be?
    Where is the bear hug Russians are know for ?
    Obviously they are not the best buddies.
    Putin wants to protect his Tartus base
    while Assad wants keep his place

    1. “Look at that handshake.
      How far can far be?”

      My thoughts exactly.

      1. Are the hands shaking or reaching to shake?

      2. Edit: my “thought” exactly, no s
        I only have one thought

        1. Hind Abyad Avatar
          Hind Abyad

          My thoughts is correct in greeting cards..

          1. 5thDrawer Avatar

            Very true.

          2. Hind, that is the fake.
            My original statement re “thoughts” is correct. As there are two sentences in arzatna’s comment that I quoted.

          3. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            He knows you can’t edit..he knows you well.

          4. Are you being cheeky? 😛

          5. 5thDrawer Avatar

            What happens when 2 O’s meet? It’s a ‘mathematical cancelling’ which results in ‘0’.

          6. LOLLLLL
            I will pay that one.

          7. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            Yes he knows you, used to be your guru..gone after i said it.
            He will find 1001 other disguises depending on the subject matter.

        2. Fake.

          (I did say I would point out it is fake if somebody fell for it)

    2. Long arms?

      1. arzatna1 Avatar

        This is what is called the cold fish handshake

    3. Hind Abyad Avatar
      Hind Abyad

      if you look ..Putin is still in walking motion ..

      1. My point exactly. They were still walking, extended their arms to reach for the handshake. Here is the handshake:

        http://img.huffingtonpost.com/asset/scalefit_630_noupscale/56278f6e1400006f003c8be5.jpeg

        1. Hind Abyad Avatar
          Hind Abyad

          Logic

          1. Maybe they should have greeted each other à la Russe: kiss on the mouth. (laughing)

          2. LOLLLLLL
            but that would upset certain homophobes on this site 😛

          3. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            :))))…

          4. are we friends now?
            I always wanted us to be friends like these fish. Only you like Assad so much and that drives me insane. and I’m so jealous that you love Nasrallah too, and Ahmadinejad
            xoxo

          5. Scum impersonating O!
            Kess emak you low life Jewish settler.

          6. True koss ommak you jew
            I hate you!!
            Hate you!

          7. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            Don’t make ZiO happy.. iginore heZiO

          8. shut up daft mare
            you want to be friend or what?

          9. Done. Unless people fall for it like Nagy did

          10. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            you don’t have to point him out, we know..pffwahah.hahah..!

          11. I love your laugh too
            I didn’t know I can actually like something about you
            all these years of calling you daft mare, I feel bad
            will you accept my apology? can we be besties?

          12. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            So some wouldn’t call it cold fish..

          13. Voilà.

          14. vou pawley fwonsai
            mwa emmeh fwonsai bocou

          15. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            Vous parlez très bien le Français

          16. I don’t even know why it is called a cold fish kiss.
            The only fish I know of that “kiss” are kissing guramis and they are warm water fish.

            “Mobile-friendly – Kissing gouramis, also known as kissing fish or kissers (Helostoma temminckii), are large tropical freshwater fish …”

          17. And may I add, they are SO CUTE.

          18. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            Cold fish is ugly expression.. unless it’s a lovely dolphin

          19. Hind, all marine life is beautiful. Just like all animals (except humans) are beautiful.
            It’s only humans who have the capacity to be ugly via their evil actions and intent.
            If an animal kills, it is coz of necessity. Whereas humans kill for a multitude of reasons, and most of those reasons are not related to necessity.

          20. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            Very true..

          21. and by the way, I’m being nice to you because Omega is around and I like his logo
            Otherwise you and the marine life are daft mare

          22. Ok now you sound like that asshole who stole hinds artwork. malmequer or whatever he called himself.

          23. And asshole, I would NEVER assume anyone is a “male”! I have the decency to ask

          24. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            You’re funny..

          25. It’s absolutely childish.

          26. 5thDrawer Avatar

            ‘Show & Tell’ preferred.

          27. “Otherwise you and the marine life are daft mare”

            How does that even make sense you retard!!

          28. I don’t know, you wrote it

          29. 5thDrawer Avatar

            A Mari Usque Ad Mare – THE MOTTO
            D’un océan à l’autre (Sop to les Francophies)
            …since 1921, the official coat of arms of the Canadian monarch and thus also of Canada
            Royal Coat of Arms of Canada
            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arms_of_Canada

          30. 5thDrawer Avatar

            (the thought being that all Canadians are Crazy …. we don’t carry guns or make wars … we just go too help where needed. )

          31. LOLLL
            Is that a unicorn????

          32. 5thDrawer Avatar

            Of course … and the Irish Rovers sang about it.

          33. 5thDrawer Avatar

            Can’t be ‘Screeched Into being a Newfoundlander’ unless you kiss a Cod.
            I wasn’t SO bad …. ;-))

          34. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            That’s the second time you repeat something about a cod..i didn’t really read the last, i tell you, i don’t understand your posts. Simple

          35. you need to learn some English first
            daft shia mare

          36. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            Yes majoos Shia ob.

          37. Fake
            Why impersonate me? I don’t get it

          38. 5thDrawer Avatar

            A Cod-fish has somewhat ‘botoxed’ lips, as I discovered … and when the cheeks are manipulated by the Newfie handling it, to come in for the kiss, they seem magically attractive … especially if you’ve had enough Screech up to that point. 😉
            The previous post was about their disappeance due to both over-fishing and waters too warm … which many feel is about having too many humans … and you should rush to become a Newfie before the demise. I can’t think of a reasonable substitute.

          39. ooooh I like that 🙂
            I wish I lived in Russia

          40. But vs, you wish you lived in Palestine ya ibn sharmouta.

            This is how disgusting settlers are!

          41. man-o-war Avatar

            I had a conference today in Bronx, NY, and the presenter had us say something about ourselves before we started. There was a Syrian, a Palestinian, a Lebanese (me : ), an Iranian, an Israeli, a Russian Jew, an Italian, and the rest were from the US. I thought it was pretty cool.

          42. I swear on everything I love that I was thinking about you 5 minutes ago.
            I was thinking where is man o, he usually comes up with hard evidence. Tbh I can’t remember what it was that made me wish you were here but I give you my word, I was thinking of you xx

          43. man-o-war Avatar

            Haha ; ), I was just thinking I haven’t been on in a while and was wondering what everyone was chatting about. I just moved to NYC for a month, its been crazy busy. Working 6-6 everyday, next day off is Sunday : (

            There is an interesting book called Skinny legs and all, by Tom Robbins. You should check if you get some leisure time. Its about an Arab and a Jew who open a restaurant together across from the UN in NYC, they call it Isaac and Ishmael’s. It was pretty entertaining. The comments made me think about for some reason.

          44. Lol are you seriously in Manhattan?
            You lucky bastard xx

            The lol was about the name of the restaurant

          45. “This is a gutsy, fun-loving, and provocative novel in which a bean can philosophises, a dessert spoon mystifies, a young waitress takes on the New York art world, and a rowdy redneck welder discovers the lost god of Palestine.”

            LOLLLLLL
            actually sounds like a good read.

          46. I’m just saying that
            1st because someone is finally talking to me
            2nd I want to sound like someone who reads books other than the Quran
            3rd I like using lol as much as possible because life is so boring in Mosul
            (if you pass by here let me know, bmossolak yeh)

          47. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            Imitating, 5th?

          48. 5thDrawer Avatar

            Can’t say I always enjoy the flattery … even if it’s sincere. ;-/

          49. 5thDrawer Avatar

            I still think ‘The Restaurant At The End Of The Universe’ must take prize for ‘best’ … although perhaps only for the view … and although Hind DID mention the warm-hearted dolphins today, who in the end say ‘Goodbye and Thanks for All the Fish.’

          50. “‘Goodbye and Thanks for All the Fish.’”

            LOLLL
            I pictured Dolphins doing that and gotta say it made me LOLLLLL

          51. i bet you are staying in Greenwich village:P

          52. btw don’t be jealous I’m flirting with Omega,
            I just love his smile

          53. man-o-war Avatar

            Annoying loser, get a life

          54. 5thDrawer Avatar

            Oh Man-O … (pssst .. I guess I shouldn’t ask so publicly .. but NYC being what it is … errrr … Tell me … what’s it like being, you know, completely surrounded by .. you know .. ‘them’? )

          55. man-o-war Avatar

            $3.50 for a lb of bacon? Damn good deal. There was recent article that suggested that bacon is carcinogenic : (
            I might have to switch to vaggie bacon.

            What do you mean by “them”? New Yorkers? It feels grimy, I can’t stop thinking about the nasty germs while riding the subway. You are holding on to the hand rail that a couple of million people have touched that day, gross!

          56. 5thDrawer Avatar

            Yes … Ewweee … I was thinking … all Jewish hands …. 😉
            That report was probably what made the bacon sale … hehehe
            I tried the Turkey-bacon … not bad … wonder how carcinogenic the flavourings are …
            That report included smoked-meats … and well … just all meats.
            Wonder what VEG-HEAD made the research … ;-))

          57. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            vs can’t speak English…hhh..
            “Only you like Assad so much and that drives me insane” ..i know who he..

          58. who?
            you’re my new best friend daft mare if you tell me who

          59. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            Majoos is frustrated..said.. i’m mad as hell and i won’t take it anymore

          60. Whoever it is, he/she/it is immature

          61. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            And.. who cares?? “It’s a heee”

          62. I care coz it is mocking me

          63. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            Only impersonating you.. for a vengeance you can see it….

          64. 5thDrawer Avatar

            In the ‘Anti-Gay-Russia’ of today, I think the hugs and kisses have gone like the Dodo.
            Although … with enough Vodka … hmmm .. they never show us the ‘parting’ pictures, do they.

          65. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            Forget your anti Communist obsession a little bit you are booorrriiiing “peaceful Canadian”. They love hockey like us, we have Russian hockey players.
            Listen to Russian music ..great people, great writers

          66. 5thDrawer Avatar

            ‘And when they are good, they are very very good … but when they are bad, they are HORRID’

    4. 1. Assad is a tall man with long arms (and legs) – luckily legs are not part of any greeting worldwide.

      2. Both Assad and Putin are walking to reach and shake hands.

      3. Here is the actual handshake:

      http://img.huffingtonpost.com/asset/scalefit_630_noupscale/56278f6e1400006f003c8be5.jpeg

      1. You are correct about the handshake. Yalibnan has a habit of posting articles and pictures that cause controversy.

        1. Hmmm. I wonder why. (laughing)

          1. Now you made me smile 🙂

          2. you’re really funny you know 😉

        2. Hind Abyad Avatar
          Hind Abyad

          Did they ever publish any article about Bush-Blair Iraqi invasion deceit.. err fraud …huhh calamity?

          1. Lol hind, of course not. That would upset their masters.
            Btw I naively used to trust Yalibnan.

          2. they did,
            http://www.cometomosulbmossolakyeh.com
            read it it’s excellent

          3. Fake..

      2. “luckily legs are not part of any greeting worldwide”

        I’m thinking of the bedroom 😛

        1. That’s a different story. (laughing)

          1. If I made one person smile today then I’m happy. Thank you xx

          2. I moved to Mosul a couple of years ago from Bab el tebaneh, Tripoli
            and it’s soooooooooo boring living here
            It’s the good thing to do, you know, because the Caliph united us all, but it’s sooooooooo boring and… well… my bedroom is also boring so if you pass by the area, write me a message, we can meet, and I’ll see your smile live 🙂

          3. 5thDrawer Avatar

            (and how could one refuse SUCH an invitation …)

          4. You are an idiot if you believed that was me!

          5. fake O

          6. 5thDrawer Avatar

            How does one fake an ‘O’?? … hmmm … maybe need a new Font. Weird …

          7. I’ve never had an O before
            baba keeps me virgin
            bass bmossolak yeh eza baddak

          8. jealous you didn’t get an invitation?
            come to Mosul
            bmossolak yeh

          9. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            Said the jalousie

          10. man-o-war Avatar

            haha, this sounds like a fake O. I have been absent for some time, things could change I guess.

          11. Man o you are correct. It is a fake.
            This is why I like you, coz you are on the ball.

            Tbh, I think it’s Nagy after that comment but it could be anybody impersonating me

          12. nagy_michael2 Avatar
            nagy_michael2

            Good catch – it’s a trap by the Caliph surrogates..lol

          13. such a cute laugh
            hihihi
            baddak mossolak yeh?

          14. nagy_michael2 Avatar
            nagy_michael2

            How cute O and Omega finally meets. it’s gotta be love. do not worry O i am just here to give you hard times. do not take me seriously..lol

          15. It is you impersonating me
            I know
            kess emmak

          16. nagy_michael2 Avatar
            nagy_michael2

            I would not impersonate you even in my dreams. And kess emmak antee because first you should not have insulted my mother you asshole. And second for being wrong. i have nothing else but to impersonate gay and lesbians. that’s all i need.. I just got home 10 minutes ago. so that should tell you it was not me. get a life Queen ISIS.

          17. liar I know it’s you
            you and that jew malmequer
            fuck you!!!

          18. nagy_michael2 Avatar
            nagy_michael2

            malmequer that queer i am surprised you both are enemies.. I am telling for the last time i only have my name here. drop dead Fred.

          19. Anymore homophobic slurs??

          20. 5thDrawer Avatar

            Nada …Passé today.

          21. So you are Nagy? Coz I could swear I asked Nagy.

          22. Maborlz Ez-Hari Avatar
            Maborlz Ez-Hari

            Sorry I thought it was an open question. Sorry nagz.

          23. nagy_michael2 Avatar
            nagy_michael2

            Lol

          24. Maborlz Ez-Hari Avatar
            Maborlz Ez-Hari

            I’ve given up, there always has been and there always will be, just keep out of my way….

          25. nagy_michael2 Avatar
            nagy_michael2

            Listen if i see Malmequer avatar i get malade and I rush for Malox. that’s how i feel about him.

          26. Sweetie, you fell for the fake. You know we me an apology.

          27. * you now owe me an apology

          28. nagy_michael2 Avatar
            nagy_michael2

            I love you.. is that good?

          29. nagy_michael2 Avatar
            nagy_michael2

            I am not fake and i am little o or Capital O. i don’t hide behind anybody and i speak my mind. i do not need to impersonate no one and i would be ashamed if i do.

          30. See? THAT is another example of your limited grasp of the English language!
            I said you fell for the fake as in the fake o. I never said you are fake.

          31. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            Not nagy.. just ignore he O

          32. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            nagy.. she said worst to me..please give chance a chance.

          33. And hind, don’t get me started! Even man o could pick it is a fake and he hasn’t been here a while.

          34. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            Well.. it’s easy to pick it is a fake..we know it’s a fake.. don’t reply…i said it’s Majoos.

      3. Hind..see how handsome he is next our grandfather..Putin..a poor Karate master…Assad also have a lot of money..power and he have everything…I bet he likes you…

  2. Hind really love Assad.She want Assad stay in power..for sure.

    1. Why don’t you speak for you and let hind speak for hind!!
      Not a difficult concept

      1. yeah she’s my best friend now
        jealous?
        come to Mosul
        bmossolak yeh

    2. nagy_michael2 Avatar
      nagy_michael2

      we decide to take over Mosul and make the Sunnis pay Jizah.. lol

      1. Hind Abyad Avatar
        Hind Abyad

        i can’t stop laughing..hhh.. fun on the mortuary Yalibanana

      2. ook…I would pay up to you all my wealth..not half of its.All…and you must save my head…without my head..I can,t see my breakfast.

        1. nagy_michael2 Avatar
          nagy_michael2

          you got yourself a deal. as a matter of fact if you convert to Greek Catholic i will even spare you the Jizah..lol
          No worry i need to spare you life because i only have you and O to give hard times..

          1. I can change my politic stand..but religion…I do believe Christian ,Shiah and Judism eventually corrupted by Jews..I ve some knowledge on comparative religion…history of religion…and I will not pay you even a cent…

          2. Maborlz Ez-Hari Avatar
            Maborlz Ez-Hari

            Tight ass.

          3. Hind Abyad Avatar
            Hind Abyad

            I didn’t see that…can’t believe it :0

  3. MekensehParty Avatar
    MekensehParty

    The Russians are simply realizing that they just got sucked into the sewers of the ME and want a quick outing. 100 airstrikes a day for a month now, trillions of rubles wasted, and on the ground Isis crushed the incapable “Resistance Axis” counterattack on Aleppo. News are coming out of a battle in Al-Safira the strategic gate to Aleppo. There the Iranian infantry coalition suffered a stunning defeat against a combined force of Nusra and Isis fighters. The Elite troops gathered by Iran for the attack retreated in disarray even abandoning an important stretch of highway between Aleppo and Damascus they controlled.
    Putin was promised lightning victories on the ground if his bombers are involved. He now realizes that his intervention, hailed by the hallucinators as a divine act of guts and proves without doubts the size of the Russian balls, will take much much longer to bear any fruits, if any.
    So, how about we change that Assad? Coz winter is coming in Russia…

    1. “the sewers of the ME ”

      You are a perfect example of the filth from those “sewers” considering you were born in those “sewers”!

      The fact you turn on your own kind demonstrates to your new masters that you can’t be trusted not to turn on them.

      1. Well said.

        1. Thanks 🙂
          I don’t believe I’ve seen you here before?

          1. I usually post on The Daily Star Lebanon but it’s falling behind on news.

          2. Maybe they diverted their funding to pay the military:)

            (That was a joke people)

          3. Sometime I talk to “people” knowing very well that no one ever reads my jokes or anything else
            (sigh)

          4. Fake,,

          5. I like your logo
            Where did you get it from?
            Where from Lebanon are you?

          6. Fake o

          7. 5thDrawer Avatar

            (became ‘pay-to-join’ site)

          8. Fake o

      2. Thanks Hind, love you too

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