World View: Russia Seeks Military Air and Naval Bases in Cyprus

This morning's key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com

  • Russia seeks military air and naval bases in Cyprus
  • Assad supporters under attack in Lebanon
  • Greece votes to lay off 27,500 civil service workers
  • Iran uncovers a western 'Wall of Fire' anti-revolutionary plot

Russia seeks military air and naval bases in Cyprus

Russia's 'Admiral Panteleyev' destroyer moored at port of Limassol, Cyprus
Russia's 'Admiral Panteleyev' destroyer moored at port of Limassol, Cyprus

As we reported and June 29, Russia has been withdrawing all its military personnel from Syria, including the naval base at Tartus, for months, and it was claimed that there are no Russian military servicemen remaining in Syria, for fear of an incident involving the Russian military that could have larger consequences.

To make up for the potential loss of its bases in Syria, Russia is asking Cyprus officials to set up a naval base at Limassol and an air base at Paphos. This agreement would mark a serious escalation of Russian capabilities in the Mediterranean, as the bases would serve as launching ground for Russian air and naval missions throughout the region. However, some officials are raising concerns that Russian bases in Cyprus would be incompatible with Cyprus’ obligations regarding cooperation with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), and Cyprus's long-time enemy Turkey is raising objections.

Cyprus and Russia have long had friendly relations. Russia has used the naval base at Limassol for refueling in the past, and many Russian oligarchs had stored billions of euros in Cyprus banks to take advantage of the high interest rates. But relations between the two countries soured earlier this year, when Cyprus accepted a bailout, and was forced to confiscate 60% of large depositors' bank accounts, particularly the accounts of Russian oligarchs. However, Cyprus officials say that there is no relationship between the military and financial issues of the two countries. Jamestown and Cyprus Mail

Assad supporters under attack in Lebanon

Ever since Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah announced that the Lebanon terror group would be openly supporting and fighting alongside the army of the regime of Syria's president Bashar al-Assad, al-Assad supporters in Lebanon, and even ordinary Shia civilians, have come under attack by anti-Assad forces, causing Lebanon to experience an "unprecedented" level of political violence. Hezbollah's military supply routes are coming under attack, and even Hezbollah strongholds are subject to terrorist bombings and assassinations. On Wednesday, Mohammad Jemo, a staunch supporter of al-Assad, was shot about 30 times by an assault rifle while he was in his own home. A Syrian national was arrested. Hezbollah officials accuse Saudis and al-Qaeda of operating within Lebanon. Daily Star (Beirut)

Greece votes to lay off 27,500 civil service workers

Municipal police officers take part in anti-austerity rally outside the Greek parliament in Athens on Wednesday (AP)
Municipal police officers take part in anti-austerity rally outside the Greek parliament in Athens on Wednesday (AP)

Greece's parliament narrowly approved a new law early Thursday morning that, if implemented, will lead to layoffs of 27,500 public sector workers, mostly teachers and municipal workers, by the end of 2014. About 5,000 Greeks holding black balloons protested outside the parliament, chanting, "We will not succumb, the only option is to resist." The layoffs are demanded by Europe and the IMF in return for 240 billion euros in bailouts, despite Greece's 27% unemployment rate. The new law will put 25,000 workers into a layoff scheme by the end of 2013, giving them eight months to find another position or get laid off. Kathimerini and AP

Iran uncovers a western 'Wall of Fire' anti-revolutionary plot

The Iranian Nuclear Program Strategic Studies Base has uncovered a plot by four Western countries about a "Wall of Fire" project against Iran. A wave of hundreds of Iranians who left the country after the bloody crackdown on peaceful protesters in 2009 would return to Iran to undermine President-elect Hassan Rouhani's administration and the Principalists. The revealed plot involves three countries in Europe and other Western countries, working with a network of the BBC and other foreign media, along with over 100 web sites and some human rights organizations, all of which are working against the revolution. Critical Threats and Iran Nuclear Reports (Trans)


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