MOSCOW— Syria’s decision to cede control of its chemical weapons was the result of a Russian proposal, not the threat of U.S. military intervention, Interfax news agency quoted President Bashar al-Assad as saying in a Russian television interview.
“Syria is placing its chemical weapons under international control because of Russia. The U.S. threats did not influence the decision,” Interfax quoted Assad as telling Russia’s state-run Rossiya-24 channel in the interview.
Russia has been Assad’s most powerful backer during the civil war that has killed more than 100,000 people since 2011, delivering arms and – with China – blocking three Security Council resolutions meant to pressure Assad.
Source: Chicago Tribune