MOSCOW, Jan. 23 (Xinhua) -- The situation in Syria does not require emergency actions from Russia, the country's top diplomat Sergei Lavrov said Wednesday.
There are hundreds of thousands of Russian citizens, mostly women living in Syria. "They were informed that if they desire to leave Syria, we could bring them home," the foreign minister told reporters during his annual press conference.
Noting that so far less than 100 people have used that opportunity, he said the Russian Embassy in Damascus is working in full swing.
Earlier on Wednesday, two Russian planes landed in Moscow's Domodedovo airport, carrying a total of 77 Russian nationals, mostly women and children, from the Lebanese capital of Beirut who had fled Syria by land, the country's Emergency Situations Ministry said.
The operation was arranged under the request by Russian citizens who wished to leave Syria, the ministry said, stressing it was not an evacuation.
About 8,000 Russian citizens have been registered in Russia's embassy in Syria. In addition, some 25,000 non-registered Russians are living in the war-torn country, according to the embassy.
DAMASCUS, Jan. 22 (Xinhua) -- A group of Russian nationals left Syria Tuesday due to the mounting violence in the country while the Syrian foreign ministry renewed accusation against the armed groups of "terrorist criminal acts."
As many as 50 Russians, mostly women and children, flew back home through Syria's neighbor Lebanon, reports said. Full story
BEIRUT, Jan. 22 (Xinhua) -- Five buses of Russian nationals arrived from Syria at an airport in the Lebanese capital of Beirut, waiting for their flight back home, the National News Agency reported Tuesday.
No diplomats or embassy staffers were among the Russian nationals, who were mostly women and children, said the report, adding that they crossed the Masnaa border point around noon on Tuesday.Full story