“It’s natural that all countries are assessing these changes in accordance with their national interests and taking certain measures they consider necessary,” Peskov said, referring more detailed questions to the Defense Ministry.

A move to reclaim the bases, abandoned shortly after Putin came to power in 2000, would further expose fault lines of the Cold War standoff with the U.S. as the two former rivals now duel over the 5 1/2 year war in Syria. While Russia withdrew from Cuba and Vietnam, it kept its small base in the Syrian port of Tartus, the only naval facility it’s maintained outside the former Soviet Union.

Since Putin entered the conflict in the Middle Eastern country on behalf of President Bashar al-Assad a year ago, Russia has now added a second base in Syria’s Khmeimim, used for conducting air raids against groups opposed to government forces there. The lower house of parliament on Friday ratified a treaty that allows Russia to keep the air base in Syria indefinitely.

Deepening Rift