SOHR: Opposition Sources Point to Signs of Russian Control over Latakia Port
Syrian opposition sources said that a joint patrol between the Russian military police and the Syrian regime forces in the port of Latakia, on Monday, was a military measure aimed at deploying observation points in the port, which was attacked twice by Israel in recent weeks. The attacks were said to have targeted Iranian weapon containers.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) had reported that the Russian military police, accompanied by Syrian forces, conducted patrols inside Latakia port on Monday, in response to a wave of popular discontent with the Israeli targeting of the port and the Russian silence.
Quoting Syrian opposition sources, SOHR said that Russia aimed to expel Iran from the port, and was seeking to extend its control to protect it from the repeated Israeli air raids. Russian forces had deployed their control nearly two years ago over the port of Tartus.
No stance was made by Damascus regarding the report.
Meanwhile, Sana Al-Ali, an opposition activist in the city of Latakia, said that a number of Russian armored military vehicles, accompanied by drones belonging to the Russian Air Force, entered the port of Latakia on Monday.
The vehicles transported a group of Russian military police, accompanied by five Syrian officers, who conducted a tour inside the port for more than two hours, during which they examined some of the yards and warehouses, and inspected the operations.
Quoted by the Syrian opposition sources, the activist added that the Russian forces were planning to establish military headquarters at the main gate of the port, and other points inside it, in order to monitor the daily operations, in cooperation with Syrian regime officers.
Source: Asharq Al-Awsat Opposition Sources Point to Signs of Russian Control over Latakia Port