The Syrian authorities had redeployed their military aircraft close to the Russian military base Hamim, hoping to protect them from attacks of the Western coalition, reported the American TV channel CNN, citing military sources.
— Evaluation of the Israeli army: Assad has several tons of chemical warfare agents
The report States that the Syrian army has redeployed all its military planes or most of them in district Hamim, which is protected by Russian air defense systems. According to CNN, in Damascus believe that the U.S. military would refrain from attacks on targets located in the vicinity of the Russian base.
Last week the Minister of defence of the USA James Mattis said on April 6 by a U.S. missile strike on the airbase shirt in the province of HOMS was destroyed 20% of the aircraft that were used by the Syrian air force. The statement was published on the official website of the Pentagon. The exact number of aircraft destroyed in the statement of Mattis was not named. In a statement quoted the defense Ministry of the USA, according to which the missile attack also caused significant damage to the air defense system fuel supply air bases and ammunition depots.
U.S. Department of defense emphasized that the missile attack was a response to the use of chemical weapons against civilians and that Syrian authorities will continue to be more careful with making decisions about such attacks.
Earlier, Pentagon spokesman Ryan brown said on CNN that 58 of the 59 cruise missiles struck the target. Two high-ranking representative of the military command told the channel that as a result of the missile attack eliminated about 20 aircraft of the Syrian air force.
After the Minister of defense CNN with reference to the analysts of IHS Jane’s notes that the Syrian air force to strike at the Sirat had 262 combat aircraft. However, the experts cannot answer the question of what percentage of this aircraft is serviceable and can be used for sorties. Also provides a statement of the Ministry of defense of Russia, according to which only 23 American missiles hit targets on the airbase Shirt, destroying six MiG-23.
The Pentagon has not published evidence about the use of Syrian air force of chemical weapons in Idlib province. But the fact of contamination by sarin in Khan Sheyhun confirmed by the experts of the Organization for the prohibition of chemical weapons (OPCW). The defense Ministry insisted on the version, according to which Syrian aircraft bombed a warehouse with chemical weapons, which led to the contamination of the terrain, with the result that people died.
April 7, the U.S. Department of defense released satellite photos taken by DigitalGlobe, which displayed base Shirt after a us missile strike. By the pictures it was clear that the air base suffered significant damage, many of the bunkers is severely damaged or completely destroyed. According to experts ImageSat International, details studied the satellite images on the base Shirt was amazed at least 44 goals (some of them, apparently, repeatedly).
The us defense Department stressed that measures were taken in order to minimize casualties. In addition, it was noted that no blows were struck at the facilities where could hold the stockpiles of chemical weapons.
Social networks have been distributed photos and videos that made the Russian military and journalists, who arrived at the shayrat airbase after the missile strike for damage assessment. One of the bloggers drew attention to the fact that the photo shirt got containers like storage tanks for chemical weapons. Later, many commentators versed in the subject, said that, in fact, these pictures show universal containers for military aviation (BKF), which can be equipped fragmentation, cumulative or volume-detonating submunitions, similar containers can be used for chemical weapons, but it is unlikely that after use they just lay on the base. The defense Ministry has acted with a refutation of the fact that we are talking about containers for chemical weapons.
On the night of 7 April, the destroyers of the US Navy and Ross Porter has released 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles at the airbase Shirt, located approximately 30 km from the city of HOMS. The strike was a reaction to airstrike Syrian aircraft in the area of Khan Sheyhun in Idlib province, as a result of which due to chemical contamination, according to the world health organization, 84 people have been killed, including 27 children, and another 545 people were hospitalized with poisoning, wounds and injuries.
Shayrat air base was chosen as the object of a missile attack, because its Syrian aircraft used for flights on military operations in Idlib.
Before the missile strike on the Sirat, the US government warned of the impending sting operation not only partners in NATO and Israel, but also Russia, as the Shirt was used as the auxiliary base and the Russian military. Moscow informed Damascus, and, according to the command of the army of Syria, almost all the aircraft had to leave the airbase to strike. At the time of the missile strike on the base was the aircraft – whether it be faulty machinery or not, is unknown. Was not carried out and complete evacuation of personnel.
The command of the Syrian army at first said three, then six of the dead, without specifying whether it is military or civilians. Then the Syrian state Agency SANA, information was disseminated about the death of nine people, including four children. The news website «al-Masdar» (UAE) wrote that killed six servicemen, among which are not only Syrians. The accuracy of all published information about the losses is questionable.
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