04:08 GMT28 February 2020
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    Syrian President Bashar Assad said Monday that Russia had been working closely with Damascus since the uprising in Syria six years ago, discussing every step of its policy and later military action regarding Syria.

    DAMASCUS (Sputnik) — The Syrian president stressed the Russian military came to Syria’s aid only after Damascus had explicitly asked it to help roll back Islamist advance in September 2015. The presence of the Daesh terrorist group, outlawed in Syria and Russia, has been shrinking steadily ever since, Assad said.

    In this photo taken on Sunday, Oct. 18, 2015, a Syrian flag flies above the village of Maaloula, north of Damascus, Syria
    © AP Photo / Alexander Kots/Komsomolskaya Pravda via AP

    "Since that time [2011], every political step and later military step has been taken – regarding the Syrian issue – in consultation with the Syrian government," Assad told several EU media.

    This approach was the reason why Russia's activity in Syria was no "colonization," according to the Syrian leader.

    "That’s why there is no colonization, there are relations between Syria and Russia that go back more than six decades and it has always been like that in different circumstances," Assad added.

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    Daesh, Bashar al-Assad, Syria, Russia
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