Syria was the only country to have abstained while the UN Security Council voted on Resolution 1500 on Iraq, Russia's Deputy Foreign Minister Yuri Fedotov told a briefing in Moscow.
"On the whole, Syria is satisfied with the resolution, especially with the part dealing with the setting up of a UN mission in Iraq, but it would have preferred the resolution to cover a wider range of issues," the diplomat said. He remarked that the rest of Security Council members had voted for the setting up of a full-scale UN mission in Iraq, adding that in Moscow's opinion, such a mission could help normalize the situation in Iraq.
According to Mr. Fedotov, the mission, with about 300 employees engaged in it, will be interacting with the US administration and Iraq's Provisional Governing Council.
As for the resolution the Security Council has adopted, it concerns civil matters only and does not contain any military issues, which remain in the framework of Resolution 1483 adopted by the Security Council earlier. In Yuri Fedotov's opinion, the new resolution is meant to help restore Iraq's sovereignty.
Representatives of the Israeli Defence Ministry responded to recent reports about the possible delivery of S-300 SAM systems from Russia to Syria. Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman said that Israel would destroy those systems
Russia is to start supplying S-300 air defence systems to Syria in the near future. The shipments will be conducted free of charge