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A swarm of armed drones attacked a Russian military base in Syria

  • Thirteen bomb-laden drones attacked two Russian military bases
  • The attackers are unknown but Russia blames Syrian rebels backed by Turkey
  • Pictures of one drone suggest a low-tech attack

Russia says it has identified the launch location from where a swarm of armed drones began their attack on two of its military bases in western Syria on Saturday.

Ten drones rigged with explosive devices descended over Russia’s Hmeimim air base while a further three targeted the Russian Naval CSS point in the nearby city of Tartus, according to the Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation.

Russia said it shot down seven drones using anti-aircraft missiles while the other six were taken under control and landed by its military. Three of the drones survived the landing and the Russian defense ministry has posted images of them on its Facebook page.

A drone reportedly captured by the Russian military after an attack on two military bases in Syria.
Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation
A drone reportedly captured by the Russian military after an attack on two military bases in Syria.

The drones appear to have assembled from a small engine, cheap plywood and a number of small rockets.

Bombs said to be attached to drones used to strike two Russian military bases in Syria.
Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation
Bombs said to be attached to drones used to strike two Russian military bases in Syria.

The defense ministry said that the Russian bases didn't suffer any casualties or damage.

According to a report published Wednesday by a media outlet allied to the Russian military, the village of Muwazarra in the southern Idlib province has been identified as the launch site.

Muwazarra is designated a "de-escalation zone" under a deal between Russia, Turkey and Iran. It has been an area of conflict between forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and rebel forces backed by Turkey.

Russia has blamed those rebels for the attack, calling it a breach of the ceasefire agreement in northern Syria. It was also reported that a complaint has already been sent to Turkish officials in Ankara.