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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iran Press TV

Russia destroys major foreign-run terrorist training base in Syria

Iran Press TV

Sat Oct 17, 2015 2:9PM

Russian fighter jets operating in the Syrian skies have successfully targeted a major foreign-run military base in the northwest of the Arab country where elements of the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group were training militants for terror attacks.

The Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement on Saturday that the country's warplanes have, in the last 24 hours, carried out 39 combat sorties, hitting 49 targets across Syria, including a training base, where it said foreign Daesh instructors trained the militants.

"Not far from Salma in Latakia province, a Su-24M bomber delivered a strike at a building, which was used as a terrorist training ground," ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said, citing intelligence sources that there were Daesh foreign instructors training militants for "guerrilla warfare in areas liberated by the Syrian army."

The Russian general said an explosives workshop inside the camp was destroyed during the attack.

According to the official, the 49 targets also included command points, weapons workshops, firing positions, depots and fortified bunkers.

Russia started its air campaign against Daesh and other terrorists in Syria on September 30, based on a request by the Syrian government.

'In Russian interest'

Meanwhile, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev once again defended the air strikes in Syria as necessary for protecting Russia's national interests, dismissing claims that Moscow's military action in Syria is meant to protect the government of President Bashar al-Assad.

"Of course, we are not fighting for specific leaders, we are defending our national interests, on the one hand," Medvedev said Saturday in an interview to be aired on state television.

"And secondly, we have a request from the lawful authorities (of Syria). That is the basis we are working on," Medvedev said.

He also echoed President Vladimir Putin's recent comments about the threat of extremists coming to Russia.

"The president said this: it's obvious that if we don't destroy these terrorists there, they will come to Russia," he said.

Syria military forces advancing

Syrian troops and allied volunteer fighters began a major offensive against terrorists near the northern city of Aleppo, the fourth Syria has launched since the Russian airstrikes over the past two weeks.

A statement from the joint command for the Aleppo operation said the army had begun the offensive into the western and southern outskirts of Aleppo.

Syria has been gripped by foreign-backed militancy since March 2011. The crisis has claimed lives of more than 250,000 people so far and displaced millions.

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