Russian Submarines Fire Missiles at Militant Targets in Syria During Saudi King’s First State Visit

October 5, 2017 Updated: October 5, 2017

Two Russian submarines fired 10 “Kalibr” cruise missiles from the Mediterranean Sea at militant targets in Syria’s Deir al-Zor province in an effort to support a Syrian army offensive, Russian news agencies cited the Defence Ministry in Moscow as saying on Thursday (October 5).

The ministry posted video footage of missiles being launched at sea and air-shots of targets being hit.

Earlier on Thursday, Russia’s Rossiya 24 state television channel cited the Russian defense ministry as saying a Russian air strike killed 49 Nusra Front militants including seven of its field commanders in Syria’s Idlib province.

Nusra Front severed ties with al Qaeda last year and rebranded to head the Hayat Tahrir al-Sham alliance.

Russia said on Wednesday it had critically injured a leader of the Tahrir al-Sham militant group, Abu Mohamad al-Golani, with an air strike in Syria that also killed 12 of his field commanders.

Golani is now in a coma, Russian news agencies cited Russia’s defense ministry as saying on Thursday.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has received Saudi Arabia’s King Salman in the Kremlin on Thursday (October 5) for talks which were expected to focus on a wide range of issues from cooperation on oil production to differences over Syria and Iran.

It is the first visit to Moscow by a reigning Saudi Monarch.

Riyadh supports rebels fighting President Bashar al-Assad’s forces while Russian troops and Iranian militias have sided with Assad. This leaves Moscow aligned with Saudi Arabia’s arch-rival Iran, whose influence Riyadh fears is growing in the region.