Russian Navy backs Syria, delivers weapons and S-300 air defense system

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LONDON — Russia is said to have sent warships to deliver an
advanced air defense system to Syria.

Arab diplomatic sources said the Russian Navy arrived in the Syrian
port of Tartous in late November and brought weapons and supplies to the regime of President Bashar Assad.

The Russian-made S-300PMU1 air defense system.

“We see this as a demonstration of Russian support for Assad, but more important it is a signal that Moscow will never leave the area, even if Assad goes,” a diplomat said.

The London-based Al Quds Al Arabi daily reported that the Russian Navy vessels transported the S-300PMU1 air defense system to Syria. The newspaper said the S-300, ordered by Assad but whose delivery was delayed because of U.S. pressure, arrived with dozens of Russian military advisers.

In a report on Nov. 24, Al Quds said the S-300, designed to track up to 100 targets simultaneously, was meant to help Assad repel any attack on Syria amid the revolt against his regime. More than 3,700 people are said to have been killed in the revolt, which began in March and is supported by Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Turkey.

China and Russia have blocked United Nations Security Council
resolutions to stop the killing in Syria. Al Quds asserted that the Russian
military has been installing advanced radar systems around all key Syrian
military and industrial sites to prevent air strikes.

In September 2010, the Kremlin canceled a nearly $1 billion S-300
project with Iran. At the time, Moscow said the S-300 would violate Security
Council sanctions on the Teheran regime, meant to hamper its uranium
enrichment program.

Israeli sources reported that Israel received PAC-3 interceptors from
the United States. They said a shipment of Patriot missiles arrived in the
Ashdod port earlier this month.

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