Russia has released footage of what officials claim to be a successful strikes targeting ISIS’s oil-smuggling tanker trucks in northern Syria.
“We’ve attacked many terrorist bases, hits were identified on targets and much damage was caused to the terrorist infrastructure,” the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement after releasing the footage, which was presented by Russian Armed Forces Lieutenant General Rudskoy in a briefing in Moscow Friday.
Russian officials claimed to have destroyed 17 oil tanker truck columns in the past week alone – part of "a Moscow-led onslaught against ISIS’s oil rackets that Russia says has wiped out nearly 2,000 oil tankers since Russia directly entered the war in Syria in September,” The Telegraph reported.
According to Al Arabiya, it is unclear whether the tankers were being operated by ISIS or by other rebel groups, since Russian warplanes have previously targeted "moderate rebel" groups in northern Syria, while claiming to have only targeted ISIS positions.
The Kremlin said it had also hit “one of the main headquarters of the militants” in an airstrike, but did not disclose the strike's location.
Russia's air force has made 5,240 sorties since it started the strikes in Syria on September 30, including 189 sorties last Thursday alone, Russia's defense ministry told reporters on Friday.