Russia will supply Syria with S-300 long-range air defence systems and other advanced weaponry that will enable the country to defend itself against the United States, according to Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Muallem.

In an interview published by Lebanon’s Al-Akhbar newspaper on 6 November, Muallem said the United States has reassured Damascus that its current airstrikes inside Syria will target only the Islamic State militant group and represent no threat to the government.

“Do we trust this pledge?” Muallem asked rhetorically. “We are aware that US President Barack Obama, for internal reasons, wants to avoid war with Syria and wants to intervene only against ISIS through airstrikes. […]