Russia sends warships to Syria

Russia has announced it is readying two warships to sail to Syria to protect Russian citizens, in a sign that it is taking precautions against a worsening of the security situation there.

A spokesman for Russia’s Black Sea fleet, Vyacheslav Trukhachev, told Russia’s Interfax news agency the mission would be undertaken “in case of necessity” and his comments appeared designed to clarify speculation that warships had already set sail for Syria. Interfax had earlier quoted an anonymous official as saying this on Monday morning.

One of the warships, said Mr Trukhachev, carries a 150-strong contingent of marines, in addition to 25 tanks, but he did not give details about the other ship. He made clear that the purpose of the mission would be only to evacuate Russian personnel and property from Syria.

Russia’s precautions came as Barack Obama, US president, and Vladimir Putin, his Russian counterpart, called for an end to violence in Syria and moves towards “political transition to a democratic, pluralistic political system” after talks on Monday at the G20 summit in Mexico.

via Russia prepares to send warships to Syria

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