Alwaght-The Russian military has s repelled an attack by as many as 13 drones, launched by militants on its compounds in Syria.
The militants launched their assault during the night on Saturday, the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement. The Russian Kheimim Airbase in the Syrian Latakia province was attacked by 10 unmanned combat aerial vehicles, while three more attempted a strike against the Russian maritime logistics base located in the city of Tartus.
All of the drones were detected by anti-aircraft defense systems “at a considerable distance from the Russian military objects,” Russian defense ministry said. Seven of them were then successfully shot down by the Russian Panzir-S air-defense system.
The Russian radio electronic warfare specialists also managed to override the operating systems of six more drones, and eventually gained control over the UAVs. Three of them were destroyed when they hit the ground, while another three were landed intact outside the base controlled by Russian forces.
The ministry also confirmed that the attack had resulted in no casualties among Russian military personnel, and the two bases “continue to operate as normal.”
It was the “first time that terrorists massively used unmanned combat aerial vehicles of an aircraft type that were launched from a distance of more than 50 kilometers, and operated using GPS satellite navigation coordinates,” the defense ministry said in a statement.
The incident comes about a week after the Kheimim air base was subjected to mortar shelling on December 31, 2017, an attack that claimed lives of two military personnel.
Russia has been flying sorties from Khmeimim since 2015, when its Syria anti-terrorist campaign began following an official request by Damascus.