Report: Iranian commander makes second Moscow visit

Alleged meeting suggests increased efforts by Russia and Iran to coordinate support for Bashar Assad’s government, as Moscow sends military advisers to Syria and builds temporary housing.

Qasem Soleimani, commander of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards’ elite Quds Force, has visited Moscow for the second time, Lebanese newspaper As-Safir reported on Tuesday.

According to the newspaper, the alleged meeting occurred last week. Continue reading

Saudis offer Russia secret oil deal if it drops Syria

Saudi Arabia has secretly offered Russia a sweeping deal to control the global oil market and safeguard Russia’s gas contracts, if the Kremlin backs away from the Assad regime in Syria.

Leaked transcripts of a closed-door meeting between Russia’s Vladimir Putin and Saudi Prince Bandar bin Sultan shed an extraordinary light on the hard-nosed Realpolitik of the two sides. Continue reading