Russia sent a flotilla of war ships Tuesday to it base in the Syrian port of Tartus. At least 4 ships are en route. Russia is playing down their latest move in Syria, despite their announcing the suspension of arms sales to the war-torn country. Many international security analysts are wondering what Russia is up to.
Former Homeland Security adviser to George W. Bush, Frances Townsend comes OutFront with her analysis.
Russia suspends new arm shipments to Syria
Russia will not deliver new weapons to Syria so long as the situation in that country is unstable, an official at the body in charge of monitoring Russia's arms trade said Monday, state media reported.
"Russia, as well as other countries, is concerned by the situation in Syria," said Vyacheslav Dzirkaln, deputy head of the Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation, RIA Novosti reported. "We are not talking about new arms supplies to that country."
"Until the situation stabilizes we will not deliver any new weapons (to Syria)," said Dzirkaln.
He specifically said Russia would not supply Syria with Yak-130 aircraft. Russia has signed a $550 million contract for the delivery of three dozen such planes, RIA Novosti said.
Still, it was not clear whether the official was saying Russia would discontinue the delivery of all arms, or whether it was stopping just the supply of "new weapons." The report seemed to leave open the possibility that Russia could continue to deliver some arms to Syria under existing contracts.