Vladimir Putin submits plan to beef up Tartus naval base in Syria

The Russian president says the nation’s troops would withdraw from combat in Syria, but Moscow’s looking to capitalize on new influence in the region

(TASS) – Russian President Vladimir Putin has submitted to the State Duma (lower house of parliament) an agreement with Syria on expanding the Russian Navy’s base in Syria’s Tartus. The information is available in the Duma’s digital database.

“The duration of the agreement is 49 years, it can be automatically prolonged for a period of 25 years in case none of the parties send a written notification to the other at least one year before a period expires concerning its intention to terminate the agreement,” the document reads.

According to the agreement, Russia will use joint facilities free of charge.

“The naval base has full immunity from Syria’s civil and administrative jurisdiction. Its movable and immovable property is immune from search, seizure and other proceedings,” the document adds.

Besides, the agreement stipulates that Russia will operate the naval base. “Russia has the right to send the necessary number of troops to maintain the naval facility,” the document says.

On Monday, Putin visited the Hmeymim air base in Syria, announcing that the most well-trained terrorist groups active in the country had been defeated, and ordered the Russian Defense Ministry to begin the withdrawal of a significant part of the Russian troops from Syria.

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