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Russia Wants Cyprus Base for Syria

NICOSIA – Russia wants to use Cyprus as a base for its Air Force to launch attacks in Syria against ISIS, Russian Ambassador Stanislav Osadchiy said.

He said the request from Moscow has been forwarded to the Cypriot Foreign Ministry. “I think we will find a way to get these facilities,” he said without elaborating, the Cyprus Mail reported.

Speaking after a meeting with EDEK chairman Marinos Sizopoulos, he said Cyprus’ position was particularly strategic for Russia and all other allies fighting the Islamic State.

“We are seeing what is happening everywhere around Cyprus,” the Ambassador said, adding that it was important to co-ordinate the actions in the fight against IS.

Osadchiy clarified that Russia wanted “the same facilities France and Germany already have. We hope to sign (a deal) soon,” he said. France and Germany use an airbase in Paphos for refueling, evacuation operations, and technical service.

Russia currently refuels its military ships in the port of Limassol and such cooperation is planned to be expanded, it had been reported earlier this year.

 

Russia has stepped up strikes on Syrian militants, including ISIS, which claimed responsibility for the attacks that killed 130 people in Paris and for downing a Russian airliner in Egypt last month, killing all 224 on board.

 

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