11:35 ~U 30.05.13

Syria has already received the first shipment of an advanced Russian
air defence system, Syria's President Bashar al-Assad is reported to
have said in a Lebanese TV interview.

Russia vowed to go ahead with sending the weapons soon after an EU
decision not to renew an arms embargo on Syria, BBC reports.

"Syria has received the first shipment of Russian anti-aircraft S-300
rockets," Al Manar quoted Mr Assad as saying in an interview due to be
broadcast later on Thursday.

"The rest of the shipment will arrive soon."

The S-300 is a highly capable surface-to-air missile system that, as
well as targeting aircraft, also has the capacity to engage ballistic

The delivery of such missiles raises fears of further tension with
Israel as Syria has said it will respond directly if Israel launches
any further air attacks on its territory.

Some analysts have characterised the possible use of the missiles as a
"game-changer" in the Syrian conflict.

It is also feared that the missiles could endanger efforts to convene
a peace conference on Syria in Geneva in June.

Syrian Foreign Minister, Walid Muallem, said on Wednesday that Syria's
armed forces were back on the offensive.

"Our armed forces have regained the momentum," he told the Lebanese media.

Armenian News -

From: Baghdasarian