Moscow, SANA – Russia’s Federation Council approved unanimously President Vladimir Putin’s request to use the Russian Air Force outside the country, namely in Syria.

The use of the Russian Air Force in Syria came upon President Bashar Assad’s request, Kremlin chief of staff Sergey Ivanov told journalists on Wednesday, following the Federation Council’s meeting.

“In order to observe the international law, one of the two conditions has to be met – either a UN Security Council resolution or a request by a country, on the territory of which an airstrike is delivered, about military assistance,” said Ivanov.

“In this respect, I want to inform you that the president of the Syrian Arab Republic has addressed the leadership of our country with a request of military assistance,” he added.

Ivanon affirmed that Russia is “not pursing any foreign political goals or ambitions, of which we have been regularly accused. The point is just to defend Russia’s national interests.”

He made it clear that the talk is of the Russian Armed Forces carrying out exclusively air operations in support of the Syrian army in its fight against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

He raised concerns over the growing number of citizens of Russia and countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) that are ISIS, putting that number at thousands.

He warned of the return of those back to Russia, as some already did, stressing that “Thus, we should work proactively on distant approaches to prevent the emergence of this problem later in Russia.”

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Ivanov noted that this operation by the Russian Air Force is limited in time and the types of the used weapons are not disclosed, adding that Russia’s partners and allies will be informed about the decision to use Russian Air Force in Syria.

H. Zain/H. Said

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