May 28, 2019
Tensions Grow between Russia, Iran in Syria – Sirwan Kajjo
Russian military police last week reportedly carried out a raid against Iranian-backed militiamen stationed at Syria’s Aleppo international airport, local media reported. In the aftermath, several Iranian militia leaders were arrested in what was seen as the latest episode of tensions between Iranian and Russian forces in Syria.
As the war is waning, with Syrian regime forces reclaiming most of the territory once controlled by rebel forces, Russia and Iran seem to be vying for influence in the war-torn country.
“There are definite tensions that exist between Russia and Iran within Syria,” said Phillip Smyth, a researcher at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy who closely follows Iranian-backed militias in Syria. “You see things like this [raid in Aleppo] that occur in flashpoint zones because there’s criminal activity going on. Each country’s proxy wants a cut of that,” he said. (Voice of America)