Foreign volunteers are needed to fight Ukrainian forces, according to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
He said those who wanted to volunteer to fight alongside Russia-backed forces should be allowed to do so at a Russian security council meeting.
Sergei Shoigu, Russia’s defence minister, said 16,000 volunteers were ready to fight alongside Russia-backed forces in the Middle East.
Syrians skilled in urban combat, according to US officials, could be among them.
Syria has long been a Russian ally, and Russian President Vladimir Putin has been a vocal supporter of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad during the country’s civil war.
“If you see that there are these people who want to come to help the people in Donbas on their own volition, not for money,” Mr Putin told his defence minister, “then we need to give them what they want and help them get to the conflict zone.”
Mr. Shoigu also proposed transferring captured Western anti-tank missile systems to Russian-backed rebel fighters in the Donbas region’s breakaway Ukrainian regions of Luhansk and Donetsk.
Foreign fighters, including former and current members of the British army, have been arriving in Ukraine to fight for Kyiv’s government.
Mr Zelensky recently stated that 16,000 foreigners had volunteered for the cause, forming a “international legion,” as he put it.
Charles Lister, a Middle East Institute analyst in the United States, questioned how useful Syrian forces would be to Mr Putin.
“If [President] Assad’s regime sends troops to Ukraine, they’ll be nothing more than cannon fodder in a battle and environment they’ve never experienced,” he wrote on Twitter.
He went on to say that there was no evidence of any actual recruitment of Syrians.
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