Skip to comments.Syria-Iran Foreign Relations
Posted on 02/08/2012 11:50:00 PM PST by U-238
Iran and Syria have maintained close ties since the early years of the Islamic Republic and Syria now serves as Irans key Arab ally and partner in the region. The advent of the Iran-Iraq War provided Syria with an opportunity to gain another regional ally against Saddam Hussein. In contrast with nearly all other Arab countries, Syria supported Iran during the Iran-Iraq War. In 1982 the two states brokered a deal allowing Syria to receive shipments of subsidized Iranian oil, and in return, Syria shut down Iraqs oil pipeline through its territory. Syrian support for Iran wavered in 1986 when President Hafez Assad suggested that Syria would not accept Iran as an occupying force in Iraq. Soon after, Minister of Irans Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) Mohsen Rafiq-Dust and President Assad met in Damascus to restore relations. Syrian officials, however, would not affirm Irans goal of liberation of Iraq.
With the absence of an Iraqi threat since 2003, relations between Syria and Iran have deepened, sustained by their shared support of terrorist organizations Lebanese Hezbollah and Hamas, and their enmity toward Israel.
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This does not include Russia’s support for Syria. The Russians have a naval base at Tartus.Since 2009, Russia has been renovating the Tartus naval base and dredging the port to allow access for its larger naval vessels. President Assad wants a Russian permanent base in the Middle East to house their nuclear armed vessels.
Exactly why the Russians will veto any UN resolution that even hints at regime change in Syria - they have invested way too much in Tartus and will never, never give it up.
What is to stop Russian (or Iranian) “advisers” from being sent to Damascus to help quell that insurrection of “terrorists and Zionists”?
There are other reasons why the Russians support the Syrian regime even though its been bumpy.Syria for the past few years has reached out to Russia to obtain modern weapons that included many modern anti-tank and anti-air missile systems that will further improve its combat capabilities. It will be difficult for advisors from Tehran to break off ties to Damascus. They both support and main suppliers of both Hezbollah and Hamas.