Latest Comments From Russia on Syria Show That Assad Could Lose His Biggest Backer

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad didn’t just get one of his airfields attacked by the U.S. this week, he’s also getting some news from Russia that he may not like.

Assad — who has received arms and support from Russia for years — could, in fact, be falling out of the Kremlin’s good graces.

According to the Associated Press:

President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman said Thursday that Russia’s support for Syrian President Bashar Assad is not unconditional, but that the country demands a full investigation of the suspected chemical attack on a rebel-held province in Syria before the United Nations takes any action.

Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov’s remarks came two days after the suspected chemical attack killed at least 72 people. Moscow, Assad’s key backer, has supported the Syrian government militarily in the ongoing conflict since 2015.

Peskov told The Associated Press in an interview that “unconditional support is not possible in this current world,” but added that “it is not correct to say that Moscow can convince Mr. Assad to do whatever is wanted in Moscow. This is totally wrong.”

Assad depends on Russian support to continue waging his war in Syria. If Russia withdraws its backing, the Syrian president will lose his most powerful ally.

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