There are no Russian ground troops in Syria

Summary

The Russian army has never sent any ground troops, and hence no special units to Syria. The article by Reuters about alleged involvement of Russian ground forces and special units in the province of Idlib is an absolute lie. Only observation troops of the Russian military police are positioned in Idlib.


                            
Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative claiming that Russian ground troops are not active in Syria.

There is a wide spectrum of evidence disproving this claim:

In  2016, Russian military intervention helped President Assad's forces regain the control of territory in Syria. The Russian military took news crews to Kawkab in Hama province to demonstrate their success. Moscow built up substantial ground forces throughout Syria.The estimates place around 4,000 troops on the ground even including several private military companies (PMC)—ENOT Corp, “Wagner” and Morgan Security Group PMC — along with Russian military police with modern weaponry. Early examples of Russian interaction with pro-government militias date back to at least August of 2015, although they are more limited.

Pictures of Russian soldiers and officers interacting with the Prophet Younis Mountain Battalion, a Latakia-based pro-Assad militia, are available.

 

publication/media

  • Reported in: Issue 158
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 18/07/2019
  • Language/target audience: Bosnian, Croatian, Macedonian, Montenegro,
  • Country: Russia, Syria
  • Keywords: Russia's Ministry of Defence, Civil war, Syrian War
  • Outlet: Sputnik Serbia
see more

US withdrew from the INF under the excuse that Russia refused to destroy the 9M-729 missile

For years, Washington has avoided a dialogue to solve the problems within the framework of the INF Treaty. The US claim that Russia violated the agreement is totally unfounded, and the US withdrawal from the INF, under the excuse that [Russia] refused to destroy the 9M-729 missile, is totally unacceptable.

Disproof

Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the INF Treaty.

Russia bears primary responsibility for the end of the INF Treaty, because it has produced, tested and deployed the 9M729 missile, which violates the agreement. In July 2014, the then-US President Obama officially accused Russia of testing a missile in violation of the INF Treaty, which prohibits the US or Russia from possessing, producing or test-flying ground-launched ballistic and cruise missiles with a range of between 500 and 5500 kilometres.

Russia finds US mercenaries in Syria

US Central Command is increasing the presence of mercenaries in Syria to make up for the withdrawal of regular troops. Only in the second half of June another 540 private military contractors arrived to the country, including commanders and instructors. The mercenaries are transported by car in groups of 12 to 16 people, and their task is mainly to form combat units loyal to Washington and protect oil and gas infrastructures.

Disproof

The deployment of US private military contractors (PMC) in this war theatre is no secret: in 2018, the Pentagon acknowledged the presence of over 5,500 PMCs in Syria and Iraq. Therefore, claiming that "Russia found them" now is a deliberate distortion of facts. No evidence is provided to support the affirmation than their number is increasing or that 540 were sent to Syria last June.

Moreover, this so-called revelation coincides with reports about the presence of Russian ground troops fighting in Idlib, denied by Moscow. Mentioning PMCs' task of protecting hydrocarbon facilities is significant, since this is exactly what Russian private military contractors have been doing in Syria, and serves to fuel the recurrent Russian narrative of a US aggression to take over the resources of the country.

NATO is preparing colour revolutions in several CSTO countries

NATO forces are preparing colour revolutions in some Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO) countries to put Western-controlled regimes in power. The goal of the Atlantic Alliance is to seed discord among the members of the CSTO and cooperating with NATO always implies an anti-Russian element.

Disproof

Six countries are full members of CSTO: Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan, with Afghanistan and Serbia as observer states. No evidence is provided to support the claim that NATO is working on fomenting protests in of any of them.

The alleged preparation of ‘colour revolutions’ to destabilise non-Western countries and take Western-backed leaders to power is a recurrent Russian disinformation narrative, frequently used to justify the persecution against domestic opposition. There are variations to this narrative, claiming that the force behind the ‘colour revolutions’ is either the US, NATO or George Soros, but it is often used to discredit popular protests all over the world, from Hong Kong to Georgia to Venezuela, and to justify the governments taking strong actions against them.