Russia will augment efforts to counter international terrorism in Syria, head of the State Duma (lower house of parliament) International Affairs Committee, Leonid Slutsky, said on Friday.

 

Jets

 

“The efforts of the peacekeeping group – that’s what I call it – of the Russian Aerospace Forces will be stepped up in the name of peace on Earth, in the name of countering international terrorism forces and in the name to promoting the internal political dialogue in Syria,” Slutsky said on the issue of ratifying the Russian-Syrian agreement on indefinite deployment of the Russian air group to Syria.

 

He added that “Russia is thus far a front-runner in the fight against international terrorism, against the Islamic State terrorist group.”

 

“Today, sober-minded elites in most countries, in particular, on the European continent, realize what is going on in the Middle East and who is really countering terrorism in Syria,” Slutsky said.

 

Russia launched an operation in Syria to combat terrorism on September 30, 2015, at the request of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. In March 2016, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered to withdraw the main part of the Russian air group from Syria.