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12:03 PM, July 20, 2018
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US Sanctions, Financial Crunch Hinder Russian Arms Sales to Syria: Diplomat
S-300 air defense systems (File photo)

Sanctions imposed by the United States against Russian and Syrian entities hinder the sale of weapons to Damscus which is also facing a severe financial crunch.

Syria has earlier shown interest in buying Russian-made weaponry, and the issue is being discussed by relevant state agencies and companies, Russia’s ambassador in Damascus, Alexander Kinshchak was quoted as saying by TASS Thursday.

He said that defense cooperation between Russia and Syria is marred by two problems.

"Firstly, it’s the lack of financing, limited financial possibilities of Syrian contractors. Besides, our economic operators worry about revealing their presence at the Syrian market and therefore, being hit with Western sanctions as a result. The sanctions, albeit illegal, are a reality if you have assets in Europe or the United States. That’s why this has become an objective sticking point," Kinshchak said.

"There are many things [in defense cooperation] that we prefer to keep out of the public eye, but, nevertheless, the dynamic is still good. The results are going to be good fairly soon," he added.

Russia had planned to reopen sale of S-300 Anti-aircraft Missile defence systems to the Assad regime following the unilateral action of the US, France and the UK in launching airstrikes on Syria in April this year.

Russia had put off a deal to sell six S-300 batteries to Bashar Assad’s regime after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu convinced Russian President Vladimir Putin during a meeting in the Black Sea resort of Sochi in May 2013.

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