Friday, October 19, 2012

Russia is gaining influence in the Middle East - Former Mossad chief

Russia is gaining influence in the Middle East and now it is an important player in the region that should be considered, Efraim Halevy, former director of Mossad, the Israeli intelligence service, and former head of Israel's National Security Council has said at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.
Halevy noted that after the USSR’s collapse, Moscow’s position was of minor importance for the region’s members. The fall down of Saddam Hussein’s regime and the events in Lybia came as successive defeats on Russia, he said, referring to the country's role in the region.
The former chief of Mossad shared his opinion that Russia’s come-back is clearly displayed through its support of Syrian President’s Assad’s regime, aimed at “keeping the situation under control” and “not letting Assad’s overthrow”.
“Russia is coming back to the region through Iraq and other countries,” said Halevy in regard to the recent agreement between Russia and Iraq for armament supply for over $4bl.
“Russia is showing its character now,” he said.
Halevy also noted that the Middle East is now the place where interests of two major powers, the US and Russia, come together. This factor could not be ignored, he said.
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