MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Since September 2015, Russia has been conducting an aerial operation against terrorists in Syria at Assad's request.
"The support of Russia and Iran has been, without any doubt, a key to our army's success [in its advance]," Assad said in an interview with Spain’s El Pais daily published Saturday.
According to the Syrian president, his country needs this support due to the fact that "there are 80 countries that back terrorism by different means."
Assad also urged to ban countries, especially Turkey, from supporting terrorists by sending militants and arms to Syria.
Syria has been in a state of civil war since 2011, with government forces loyal to Assad fighting against a number of opposition factions and extremist groups.