A new satellite image Shows Russia has sent more than a dozen attack planes to Syria. The picture shows 16 warplanes at a Syrian Army airbase near the coastal city of Latakia, backing reports of Moscow support made by the Syrian military earlier on Tuesday.
Damascus recently received a fresh batch of arms from Russia, including at least five fighter planes, which they have deployed against ISIS fighters, a Syrian military official said today.
The satellite image shows at least 12 Su-25 Frogfoot attack lined up next to the four Russian Air Force Su-30SM multirole combat planes, The Aviationist reports.
The deliveries came amid a rapid Russian military build-up in Syria, with US officials claims Moscow had deployed 28 combat planes and begun drone flights in the country.
Damascus had also received ‘sophisticated military equipment to fight ISIS,’ including targeting equipment and precision-guided missiles, according to the military official.
The new weapons had already been deployed against ISIS in the cities of Deir Ezzor and Raqa, the terrorist group’s de facto capital in Syria, The Mail reported.
‘Russian weapons are starting to have an effect in Syria,’ the official said.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said new Russian equipment has already been put into action, with at least 38 ISIS fighters killed Monday in air strikes in terrorist-held towns in central Syria.
The boost to President Bashar al-Assad’s military force by Russia is raising deep concerns in Washington.
On Monday, US officials said Moscow had deployed 12 SU-24 attack aircraft, 12 SU-25 ground attack aircraft and four Flanker fighter jets.
They said there were also about 20 Russian combat and transport helicopters at the base and that Moscow was operating drone flights.
‘They are not going to sit around,’ said Jeffrey White of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.
‘This kind of aircraft suggests that the Russians intend to exert their combat power outside of Latakia in an offensive role.’
The deployments come as Russia pushes for the coalition of Western and regional powers fighting ISIS to join forces with Syrian Army against the ISIS terrorist.