Moscow: The civil war raging in Syria is targeting not only Damascus but the entire "axis of resistance" formed with its allies, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has said.
Syria, Iran, its closest ally in the region, as well as the Lebanese Shia movement Hezbollah and Hamas, the de facto rulers of the Gaza Strip, refer to themselves as an "axis of resistance" in their common opposition to Israel.
"The ongoing war is targeting the entire axis of resistance, not just Syria," the Syrian SANA news agency quoted Assad as saying at a meeting with Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi.
The Syrian conflict has claimed up to 20,000 lives, according to estimates by various groups. The authorities say around 8,000 have been killed.