Russia’s Aerospace Forces launched a surgical assault against the rebranded Al Nusra Front terrorist group, killing seven leaders and 49 additional fighters, according to the Russian Ministry of Defense.
Russia’s Aerospace Forces killed 49 militants, including seven Nusra Front (Jabhat al-Nusra, banned in Russia) terrorist group leaders, in a precision strike in Syria, Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said Thursday.
“As a result of a precision strike by a Su-34 bomber, 49 militants were eliminated, including seven leaders of militant groups of al-Nusra’s ‘eastern sector’,” Konashenkov said.
“The destruction by the Russian Aerospace Forces of Jabhat al-Nusra’s command and the coma… of leader Abu Muhammad Jawlani caused confusion among terrorists throughout the province of Idlib,” Konashenkov said.
The ministry reported Wednesday that a Russian combat jets’ strike in Syria left Jawlani with heavy fragmentation wounds and in critical condition.
Russia, along with Iran and local militia forces, has been assisting the Syrian government in its fight against the terrorist groups wreaking havoc in the Arab country since 2011.
Moscow has been conducting an anti-terrorist operation in Syria since September 30, 2015, at the behest of Syrian President Bashar Assad.
The ongoing war in Syria has left an estimated 220,000 dead and displaced approximately 12 million people (the nation’s pre-war population was over 20 million, but most refugees are internally displaced, living in government controlled regions). Many of those who have left the country have poured into nations such as Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan, while others have sought asylum in Europe, making it the largest humanitarian crisis since World War II, according to the United Nations.