Russia Gets Safe Passage for ISIS Strikes

The US-led coalition provided Russian bombers safe passage as they took off from Iran, flew through Iraqi airspace, and struck ISIS targets in Syria on Aug. 16, Army Col. Christopher Garver, spokesman for Combined Joint Task Force-Operation Inherent Resolve, said during a Tuesday briefing. Russia used the standard line of communication to notify the coalition it was flying through the area and the US air operations center “ensured safety of flight as those bombers passed through the area,” said Garver, who noted that the Russian flights did not impact coalition operations. The Russian Ministry of Defense on Tuesday said Tu-22M3 bombers and Su-34 aircraft took off from the Iranian Hamedan airbase and carried out airstrikes on ISIS and Jabhat al-Nusra targets in Aleppo, Dayr Al-Zawr, and Idlib. Russia said it eliminated five ammunition depots, training camps, and “a significant number of militants.”