RIA Novosti: Doubts Cast Over Reported S-300 Deliveries to Syria
MOSCOW, May 30 (RIA Novosti) – Reports that Syria’s president had confirmed receiving a consignment of Russian-manufactured S-300 air defense systems emerged Thursday, but were quickly brought into question.
In comments widely reported across the world, Lebanese newspaper Al Akhbar quoted Syrian President Bashar Assad as saying Damascus had received initial deliveries of the S-300 system.
Assad's remarks were allegedly made during a pre-recorded interview to be aired on Hezbollah-controlled Almanar television channel on Thursday evening at 10:00 p.m. Moscow time.
But a high-level source at Lebanon-based Almanar, who said he had been present throughout the interview, told RIA Novosti by telephone that at no point did Assad explicitly confirm any S-300 deliveries.
When Assad was asked about the delivery of the anti-missile systems, the source – who requested that his name not be printed – said, the Syrian president replied that “everything we have agreed with Russia will be implemented, and a part of it has been implemented already.”