MOSCOW, December 3. /TASS/. The United States and leading NATO countries are paying close attention to the actions of Russian military in Syria, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin said in an interview with the NTV television channel on Thursday.
"What we are doing in Syria is not only a matter of respect of our society for our military and defense industry officials who gave them these high-precision weapons, but also a matter of close attention on the part of all Pentagon and leading NATO countries’ experts for what we already really have and what huge progress we have made in development of our defense industry sector," Rogozin said.
He underscored that when choosing means of deterrence to avoid a military conflict with NATO, "Russia chooses such deterrence means that may be strongly disliked by a potential aggressor despite our objective assessment that our economic potential is lower."
Speaking of import substitution difficulties in the defense sphere, the deputy premier said "all should be located, or nearly all, in Russia," but the country has "two weak spots - microelectronics and machine-tool industry."
He also said the situation when most part of civil aviation aircraft in Russia are foreign-made is inadmissible.
Russia’s operation in Syria
Russia’s Aerospace Forces started delivering pinpoint strikes in Syria at facilities of the Islamic State and Jabhat al-Nusra terrorist organizations, which are banned in Russia, on September 30, 2015, on a request from Syrian President Bashar Assad.
The air group initially comprised over 50 aircraft and helicopters, including Sukhoi Su-24M, Su-25SM and state-of-the-art Su-34 aircraft. They were redeployed to the Khmeimim airbase in the province of Latakia.
On October 7, four missile ships of the Russian Navy’s Caspian Flotilla fired 26 Kalibr cruise missiles (NATO codename Sizzler) at militants’ facilities in Syria. On October 8, the Syrian army passed to a large-scale offensive.
In mid-November, Russia increased the number of aircraft taking part in the operation in Syria to 69 and involved strategic bombers in strikes at militants.
Targets of the Russian aircraft include terrorists’ gasoline tankers and oil refineries.