The small group, about 30-40 people, called for Russia to end its support for the Assad regime. Many of them had travelled by bus from Sydney and Wollongong. The protestors, Australian-born Syrians, as well as newly-settled Syrian refugees, chanted “Down, down, Putin. Down, down Assad.” President of the Australian for Syrian Association, Dr Anas Natfaji said the alliance between Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and Russian President Vladimir Putin has become “more evident now”. “We’ve all been following the news about the tragedies in Syria; things got escalated last week,” he said. “There’s now unprecedented intervention by the Russian Army itself. All the weapons Bashar uses are supplied directly by Putin.” In the midst of the chanting, Dr Natfaji approached the gates of the embassy and handed an envelope to an embassy staff member.
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