'Swarm of armed drones': Who is attacking Russia's military bases?

'Swarm of armed drones': Who is attacking Russia's military bases?

Moscow has noted “strange coincidences” surrounding a terrorist attack on a Russian airbase and port facility in Syria, in which guided combat drones were deployed by militants.

After foiling a flurry of drone attacks against their air and naval bases in Syria bases on Monday, Russia has begun to ask questions about what rebels these are and how they got such advanced drone capabilities.

Ten descended on the air base, three on the naval base. Russian anti-aircraft defence system successfully shot down seven drones.

Each of them carried several explosive devices under their wings, and were guided from up to 100km away by Global Positioning System.

Last month the YPG militia said it had fully captured Deir al-Zor's eastern countryside from Islamic State with the help of both the USA -led coalition and Russian Federation.

The Russian bases did not suffer any causalities or damage, according to Moscow's ministry of defense.

Cavusoglu said 95 percent of the violations in Idlib were carried out by the government and groups backing the government.




The drone attack, however, came less than a week after two Russian servicemen were killed in a sustained mortar assault on the same base, which appears to have caused some damage to Russian military assets.

While photographs of the improvised UAVs used in the assault make the drones look clunky and strung together, the Russians' analysis reveals they were armed with explosives and launched from a site more than 50 kilometres (31 miles) distant from their targets, navigating the trek via Global Positioning System and altitude-control sensors. The Kremlin obviously has been concerned about these type of Islamist attacks after they withdrew the bulk of Russian military forces from the Area.

The Syrian army also said Israel launched land-to-land missiles into Syria from the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, but it intercepted them.

Last month, Russian President Vladimir Putin made a surprise visit to Syria and declared victory in the long fight against the Islamic State militant group. The Russian Defense Ministry denied any of its aircraft were lost, but it acknowledged that two troops died in the shelling.

On Wednesday, the defence ministry announced the drones' launch site was located in the southwestern region of Idlib, a province controlled by several rebel factions and insurgents in the ongoing civil war.

While Russia will continue its military intervention, it will at the same time seek a peaceful resolution between the Syrian government and the opposition groups to guarantee its influence in the future of the country, Clarke said.

According to the Rand Corporation's Clarke, through a military operation and efforts to lead a political transition, Russian Federation ultimately wants to project its influence and compete with the United States, in its North Atlantic Treaty Organisation role, as a leading power.

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