News / Middle East

Russia Denies Change in Stance on Syria

VOA News
Russia's foreign ministry says Moscow's policy on Syria has not changed, after a top diplomat was quoted as saying Syria's opposition may win its battles against President Bashar al-Assad.

The ministry, on Friday, said Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov had not made any statements or conducted "special interviews" with journalists over the past few days regarding Syria.  

On Thursday, Russian media quoted him as saying Assad was increasingly losing control of his country's territory, and that an opposition victory could not be ruled out.  It was seen as the first time Russia, a powerful Syrian ally, had acknowledged the Syrian government was beginning to crumble in its nearly two-year battle against anti-government forces.

But Russia's foreign ministry said Bogdanov was referring to the claims of the ``Syrian opposition and its foreign sponsors forecasting their quick victory over the regime in Damascus."  It said Bogdanov made the remark to a Kremlin advisory body that was discussing issues in the Middle East and North Africa.

Moscow and Beijing have repeatedly blocked efforts by the United Nations Security Council to address the Syrian crisis.

Separately, NATO chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen predicted a pessimistic outcome for Assad. On Thursday, he said Assad's government was "approaching collapse" and the Syrian leader's fall was "only a matter of time."

Earlier this week, a group of more than 100 nations formally recognized a newly formed opposition coalition as the legitimate representative of the Syrian people.

You May Like

Lesotho Faces New Round of Violence, Political Crisis

Brutal killing of military officer has sent former leaders back into S. Africa where they're watching anxiously as regional officials head in to try to restore peace More

Video VOA EXCLUSIVE: US Diplomat Expects Adoption of Bosnian Massacre Anniversary Resolution

Samantha Power says there's broad consensus about killings in Bosnia's war, but Russia calls resolution 'divisive,' backs countermeasure at UN More

UN Report Exposes Widespread Boko Haram Atrocities

Damning report graphically details pattern of vicious, widespread atrocities committed by Islamist militants More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Sunny Enwerem
December 14, 2012 11:42 AM
Russia has my respect for maintaining their stand,switching would be a caword and weak move,it still wouldn't change the matter on ground.
In Response

by: Anonymous
December 14, 2012 9:55 PM
Maintaining their stand? Arming Assad? Obviously Putin cares NOTHING about the Syrian people or he would of helped end this war. Instead he sips his tea counting the money from weapons he sold cold blooded killer Assad. It may be too late for Putin to win the hearts of not only Syrians but people worldwide. He dug himself into this mess, and won't be able to get out easily. A terrible leader for the Russian people. Everyone knows that his decisions do not represent the true feelings of the Russian people.

by: Top Winners from: Australia
December 14, 2012 7:25 AM
So Amazing!
Long live The USA and Free World!
Soon or late, Great Victory will belong to us and all oppressed people in dictatorial regimes, all over the world.
You yourself are really Amazing Angels of The Planet.

by: bean cube from: Seattle WA
December 14, 2012 7:01 AM
Not facing reality, those sloppy foreign ministries will not have any real shake up for taking bribes or ignoring drawback from those crazy families of Assad.
In Response

by: Anonymous
December 14, 2012 9:58 PM
Nice try, trying to mix this up syrian nationalist...
If you are up on things the Americans denounced any support for any terrorist groups. As for terrorists in Syria, the biggest one of all is Assad, he terrorized the entire country and killed the most civillians. Who's the terrorist in Syria??? Assad. Get your facts straight.
In Response

by: Anonymous
December 14, 2012 8:08 AM
Nice editing there VoA.
In Response

by: syrian nationalist from: syria
December 14, 2012 7:44 AM
bean cube, you've got no idea what you're talking about. The US is the one that is betraying everything it stands for by siding with al-Qaeda against seculars and peaceful religious minorities

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prisoni
X
Heather Murdock
July 01, 2015 8:59 PM
As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Nubians in Kenya Face Land Challenges

East Africa's ethnic Nubians have a rich cultural history that dates back thousands of years, but in Kenya they are facing hardships, including the loss of lands they have lived on for generations. They say the government has reneged on its pledge to award them title deeds for the plots. VOA's Lenny Ruvaga reports.
Video

Video Military Experts Question New Russian Tank Capabilities

Russia has been showing off its new tank design – the Armata T-14. Designers claim it is 20 years ahead of current Western designs - and driving it feels like playing a computer game. But military analysts question those assertions, and warn the cost could be too heavy a burden for Russia’s struggling economy. Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.

VOA Blogs