Russia has never said that it supported all the actions taken against the rebels by Damascus. Nor has it ever said it was providing the Assad regime with weapons that it might use against the opposition. But Russia has always admitted that it is providing the Syrians with arms under contracts that had been signed and paid for a long time ago. But only defensive weapons. Finally, the fact that Moscow has never made a settlement in Syria conditional on removal of its incumbent president does not mean Russia sees Bashir al-Assad as the only acceptable leader.
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