Putin meets with Syria's Bashar al-Assad during rare visit to Damascus

Bashar al-Assad and Vladimir Putin.
(Image credit: Alexey Druzhinin/AFP via Getty Images)

Russian President Vladimir Putin traveled to Damascus on Tuesday to meet with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. According to the Kremlin, Putin declared "with confidence that a huge distance has been traveled toward restoring Syrian statehood and the country's territorial integrity."

It's been almost nine years since civil war broke out in Syria. Putin and Assad are allies, and in 2015, when Assad's troops were struggling to fight opposition forces, Moscow intervened, sending military advisers and launching airstrikes. This was a major turning point, and the Syrian government has since been able to recapture most of the territory it lost.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told several Russian news agencies that Putin "noted that on the streets of Damascus, the signs of how peace has been restored can be seen with the naked eye."

Subscribe to The Week

Escape your echo chamber. Get the facts behind the news, plus analysis from multiple perspectives.

SUBSCRIBE & SAVE
https://cdn.mos.cms.futurecdn.net/flexiimages/jacafc5zvs1692883516.jpg

Sign up for The Week's Free Newsletters

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

Sign up

Putin's visit occurred before Iran fired more than a dozen ballistic missiles at two Iraqi bases housing U.S. troops. The attacks were in response to an airstrike authorized by President Trump that killed Iranian Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani. Iran, Syria, and Russia are all allies.

Continue reading for free

We hope you're enjoying The Week's refreshingly open-minded journalism.

Subscribed to The Week? Register your account with the same email as your subscription.

Catherine Garcia

Catherine Garcia is night editor for TheWeek.com. Her writing and reporting has appeared in Entertainment Weekly and EW.com, The New York Times, The Book of Jezebel, and other publications. A Southern California native, Catherine is a graduate of the University of Redlands and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.