Russian Warplanes Fly First Combat Mission in Syria Alongside U.S.-Led Coalition Forces

The Russian defence ministry has said its warplanes have flown their first combat mission in Syria with US-led coalition aircraft
The Russian defence ministry has said its warplanes have flown their first combat mission in Syria with US-led coalition aircraft

Russian fighter jets have flown their first combat mission in Syria alongside US-led coalition forces, reports say.

The landmark operation was revealed by the Russian Defence Ministry this evening, but it is yet to be confirmed by Washington.

Coming just three days after Donald Trump became the 45th President of the United States, the mission could arguably be seen as signs of America’s new relationship with Vladimir Putin’s administration.

Russia-U.S relations were at their lowest since the Cold War under Barack Obama, with tensions around conflict in Ukraine and Syria crisis.

However, reports have recently emerged that President Trump is planning to make contact with the Russian leader, in coming months.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters that contacts between Moscow and Washington about the date of the first phone call between the two leaders were being handled by the Russian Foreign Ministry.

Contrary to this evening’s reports, Mr Peskov explained that it was too early to talk about the details of any possible cooperation between Russia and the United States in fighting Islamist militants.

Despite efforts to build bridges with the Kremlin, last week Trump made clear that he wanted Russia’s nuclear weapons to be ‘reduced very substantially’.

In an interview with The Times he said: “They have sanctions on Russia – let’s see if we can make some good deals with Russia.”

“For one thing, I think nuclear weapons should be way down and reduced very substantially, that’s part of it.”

The President also criticised Russia for its intervention in the Syrian civil war, describing it as ‘a very bad thing’ that had led to a ‘terrible humanitarian situation.’

SOURCE: Daily Mail, Alex Matthews