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BEIJING, October 17. /TASS/. Russia could not but respond to the Syrian government’s call for military assistance in its struggle against the Islamic State, Deputy Defence Minister Anatoly Antonov told the 6th Xiangshan Security Forum on Saturday.
"There was no way of ignoring the call for help from the government of friendly Syria, which has to bear the brunt of the struggle against Islamic State militants. The Russian leadership made a decision to extend military and military-technical assistance to that country," Antonov said.
He stressed the fact Russia was participating in the anti-terrorist operation in Syria in strict compliance with international law.
Antonov said the Defence Ministry in Syria was operating "transparently" and regularly providing "objective information about the forces and means being used and the results of the strikes made." It was doing so on the daily basis.
Since 30 September Russia’s aerospace group in Syria has been attacking terrorist targets. The fleet of Russia’s aircraft in Syria consists of more than 50 helicopters and planes. Russia’s naval ships in the land-locked Caspian Sea hundreds of miles away attacked the Islamic State with cruise missiles.