Russian President Vladimir Putin Friday approved an agreement allowing permanent use of the military base in Khmeimim, Syria.
The agreement signed between Russia and Syria in August 2015 provides for the permanent deployment of Russian warplanes and soldiers at the airbase. Putin approved the agreement after senators ratified it, and it goes into force Friday, Oct. 14.
Under the agreement, Russia will use the airbase free of charge, and Russia will be in charge of all equipment, planes, and personnel inside the base. All apparatus coming from Russia will be tax free, and Syria has no right to sue Russia or its personnel for their conduct.
With recent moves, Russia is apparently seeking to secure a permanent presence in Syria. Earlier this week Russian Defence Minister Nikolay Pankov said Russia plans a permanent naval base in Tartus, Syria’s second-largest port city.