Will US missile strike shift Iran-Russia partnership in Syria?

Al-Monitor | Hamidreza Azizi: In a move that surprised many observers as well as politicians around the world, US President Donald Trump ordered a targeted missile attack against a Syrian air base on April 6. The strike, which the United States said was in retaliation for the April 4 chemical attack in Khan Sheikhoun, marked a shift from former President Barack Obama’s policy of restraint toward the Syrian crisis.

As expected, the strike sparked sharply varied reactions around the world. While the dominant reaction among the Europeans was a welcoming of the strike as “punishment” for the chemical attack, other US allies, and especially Turkey and Saudi Arabia, went even further, calling for more comprehensive US military strikes to overthrow Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

However, Iran and Russia, as the main supporters of the Syrian government, did not hesitate to condemn the US strike, calling it a violation of international norms and law and a new manifestation of American aggression.

However, while both Moscow and Tehran are still emphasizing their support for the Syrian government, one important question is that of whether the US strike will fundamentally alter the nature of Iranian-Russian interactions in Syria or have a broader impact on the bilateral relationship between Tehran and Moscow. To answer this question, several important points must be considered.

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