Russia starts bombing ISIS targets in Syria

Russia starts bombing ISIS targets in Syria –

Russia began striking targets in Syria for the first time on Wednesday, hitting an as yet undisclosed site near Homs, a US official told CNN. 

“They gave us a heads-up they were going to start striking in Syria,” the official said.

The raid came just hours after the upper chamber of the Russian parliament unanimously voted to gave President Vladimir Putin permission to use the country’s air force in Syria. 

Head of the presidential administration Sergey Ivanov told media that no ground troops would be sent and that the operation would be limited to airstrikes.

The bombing is being carried out at the behest of the Syrian government. Russia says that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad had asked Moscow to step in, with Russian state channel Russia Today saying this made the intervention legal under international law, unlike the US-led anti-Islamic State airstrikes that began last year. 

Ivanov added that Putin had decided to ask to deploy Russian planes due to the large number of Russian and former USSR nationals who had chosen to join the Islamic State group and now posed a grave threat to Russian national security. 

“This is not about reaching for some foreign policy goals, satisfying ambitions, which our Western partners regularly accuse us of. It’s only about the national interest of the Russian Federation,” the official said.

Putin had requested similar permission from the Federation Council to deploy military forces abroad ahead of the annexation of Crimea in March 2014.

Russia’s powerful Orthodox Church has since voiced support for Moscow’s decision, calling it a “holy battle”.
“The fight with terrorism is a holy battle and today our country is perhaps the most active force in the world fighting it,” the head of the Church’s public affairs department, Vsevolod Chaplin said, according to Interfax news agency.


Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.