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Russia says its strike in Syria killed 30 al-Qaida fighters

Thursday, Nov 17, 2016,16:03 IST By metrovaartha A A A

Moscow | The Russian military says one of its airstrikes in Syria this week killed at least 30 members of Syria’s al-Qaida-linked group, including some of its leaders.

Defence Ministry spokesman Maj Gen Igor Konashenkov says the strike took place in Syria’s northern province of Idlib on Tuesday.

He says it was launched from a Russian aircraft carrier in the Mediterranean and hit the al-Qaida-linked militant group, now known as Fatah al-Sham Front.

Konashenkov said on today that Russian intelligence reports have confirmed that three prominent leaders of the al-Qaida branch Muhammad Helala, Abu Jaber Harmuja and Abul Baha Al-Asfari were among those killed.

The strike was part of a long-anticipated offensive against rebel-held areas announced by Russia, a key ally of Syrian President Bashar Assad.