MOSCOW (AP) — The Russian military is considering the possibility of regaining its Soviet-era bases on Cuba and in Vietnam, the Defense Ministry said Friday, a statement that comes amid growing U.S.-Russia tensions over Syria.
Deputy Defense Minister Nikolai Pankov told lawmakers Friday that the ministry is considering the possibility of establishing footholds far away from Russia’s borders.
Responding to a lawmaker’s question if the military could return to Cuba and Vietnam, Pankov said the military is “reviewing” a decision to withdraw from them, but didn’t offer any specifics. “As for our presence on faraway outposts, we are doing this work,” he said.
In 2001, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the military to pull back from Cuba and Vietnam as he sought to bolster ties with the United States. The U.S.-Russian relations now have plunged to the lowest point since the Cold War times amid strain over Syria and Ukraine. MORE