Russia forces among dozens dead in IS east Syria attacks
Published : Sunday, 27 May, 2018 at 10:23 PM Count : 499
Russian fighters were among dozens of pro-government forces killed in eastern Syria this week in a deadly wave of attacks by Islamic State group jihadists, Moscow and a monitor said Sunday.
The deadliest was on Wednesday, when IS targeted a group of Syrian and allied Russian fighters near the town of Mayadeen in the eastern province of Deir Ezzor, AFP reports.
“There were 35 pro-government forces killed, including at least nine Russians. Some of those Russian nationals were government troops, but not all of them,” said Observatory head Rami Abdel Rahman.
The remaining 26 were all Syrian forces, he told AFP.
A steadfast ally of President Bashar al-Assad, Moscow has helped his army recapture swathes of territory since 2015 by providing air strikes and ground troops.
There are also widespread reports of private Russian mercenaries on the ground.
Moscow’s defence ministry said Sunday four of its servicemen were killed in clashes in Deir Ezzor.
Two were military advisers supporting Syrian artillery operations and died immediately, and another two died of their wounds in a Russian-operated military hospital in Syria.
Three others were wounded.