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 Putin is liar: Russia has sent even more troops to Syria, - The Daily Signal

Russian President Vladimir Putin's intentions to withdraw troops from Syria were smoke and mirrors, while Russia has been rolling in even more troops and equipment.

Censor.NET reports referring to an article by Heritage Foundation experts Alexis Mrachek and Luke Coffey for The Daily Signal.

"Russian President Vladimir Putin has once again proven that he cannot be trusted," they note.

The experts recall that on March 14, Putin began ordering troops to return home from Syria. It is true that some troops did leave the country. But, the authors say, this announcement was more about distracting the world and portraying Russia as part of the solution in Syria rather than being part of the problem.

Even though Russia might have removed some troops, it left behind advanced anti-aircraft systems, plenty of fighter planes and bombers, and hundreds of troops and special forces. The experts remind that Russia entered Syria last year with only a naval base located at Tartus and is now leaving Syria with an additional air base at Hmeimim. Less than a month later, evidence was released of more troops filtering back into the war-torn country. The cover story was that they were supposedly there to clear out a number of mines, but no one really knew their true intentions. Russia is still conducting airstrikes, even after their cessation of hostilities agreement with the United States.

Read more: Eight fighters from detained GRU officer Yerofeyev's group perform combat missions in Syria, - Skibitskyi. LIST

"Russian special forces and air force helping Assad's army were involved in fighting for the ancient city of Palmyra. There is talk that a Russian-supported offensive against Aleppo is in the works," the authors say, adding that Russia is currently transporting artillery units into northern Syria.

According to Ben Rhodes, a deputy national security adviser for the U.S., President Barack Obama told Putin that "Russia should focus its efforts on the diplomatic process." However, it doesn't seem like Moscow will heed this instruction.

"Russia doesn't exactly have the best track record for keeping its word. Moscow routinely violates its cease-fire arrangement with Ukraine and continues to supply weapons to Ukrainian separatists," the article notes.

The authors suggest that Russia is increasing its intervention in Syria to show that it is a global power. Another explanation is to use its influence in Syria to secure a stronger negotiating position on other issues like Ukraine.

"Whether it is in Georgia, Ukraine, or Syria, Putin will do anything to make it seem that Russia is a global power on equal footing with the United States. As long as the West lets him get away with it, Putin will keep on lying. It is time for the world to wake up," the experts conclude.

Read more: Occupation of Crimea and war in Syria - elements of Putin's broader expansionist plans, - USA Today
 
 
 
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