Russia implies US involvement in drone strikes on Syria military bases

Elias Hubbard
January 13, 2018

Six of the assault force drones were intercepted by Russian electronic warfare units, with three of the UAVs being brought to land outside the base, while the remaining three exploded on contact with the ground. The monitor also reported a total of 159 deaths of combatants on both sides of the battle and the deaths of around 48 civilians from airstrikes and a yet unclaimed auto bomb blast in central Idlib, as well as the displacement of up to 150,000 more civilians fleeing violence in Idlib.

The fixed-wing drone resembled an oversize toy aircraft and appeared to have been cheaply assembled from a type of plywood, said Aaron Stein of the Washington-based Atlantic Council. It was also further noted that detonators used in the explosive attached to the drones were of foreign manufacture.

In its latest announcement, the Ministry of Defense said the drone attack had occurred overnight last Friday.

"The drones look to me like a DIY project, and decidedly low-tech", he said.

Recent pictures of captured Jihadist drones in Syria were released.

The Khmeimim airbase came mortar attack on New Year's Eve and seven aircraft were destroyed and two Russian troops were killed, according to Russia's Kommersant newspaper. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Wednesday "intense contacts" were in progress between Russia , Iran and Turkey in order to draw up the list of participants.

Syrian reporter Yaman al-Sayed of Orient News was injured while covering bombings near Damascus, Syria on January 3.

"Behind the attack there is, in my opinion, the" Islamic state.

Russian media reported two smaller drone attacks against military outposts in the provinces of Homs and Latakia over the past two weeks.

Turkey had previously voiced its discontent to Russian and Iranian officials via military and diplomatic channels about the government forces' violations of de-escalation zones, according to the sources.

"These people have no aid, no one to help them", he said. "We have said we will not be in any environment. where the YPG is present", said Cavusoglu. "The village has always come under shelling, and the regime and Russian Federation don't need an excuse to bomb us".

Assad and his allies now command the single largest chunk of Syria, followed by US-backed Kurdish militias who control much of the north and east Syria and are more concerned with shoring up their regional autonomy than fighting Damascus. But while Turkey backs the opposition, Russian Federation and Iran support Syrian President Bashar Assad.

But after the al-Qaeda affiliate Jabhat al-Nusra drove the SRF out of the area in 2014, it has been under overall control of the extremists.

Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu on Wednesday urged Iran and Russian Federation to realize duties as guarantor states in Syria and stop Assad regime violations against the moderate opposition forces in Idlib.

The Hmeimim and Tartus bases continue to operate normally, the ministry said. It has also vetoed any group related to the PYD at the talks. "It's very, very murky".

The ministry derided a Pentagon statement that drone technology could be bought on the open market and said it was taking "a fresh look" at the fact that a Poseidon "patrolled over the area of the Mediterranean Sea between Tartus and Hmeimim at an altitude of 7,000 metres for more than four hours during the..."

"Iran and Russian Federation should fulfil the responsibilities [as guarantor states] in Syria", Cavusoglu said in remarks published by state media.

Earlier, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu accused Syrian government forces of attacking moderate opposition fighters under the guise of fighting extremists and said the move threatened peace talks scheduled in Russian Federation later this month.

Turkey has called on Russian and Iran to stop a Syrian government offensive on the rebel-held province of Idlib, as Russia claims rebel from the province attacked its base last week with drones.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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