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Confusion over Russia air strikes on Syria

Friday, October 02, 2015 - 01:24

Russia's president denies its air strikes on Syrian territory killed civilians despite allegations by rebels on the ground. Paul Chapman reports.

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Social media footage purportedly showing the pounding of Russian air strikes on targets in Syria. The video, uploaded to a social media website, is said to have been shot in the Damascus and Idlib regions on October 1st. Western-backed rebels on the ground say 36 civilians were killed in Russia's air strikes on what Moscow says were Islamic State targets. The rebels say no Islamic State militants died in Wednesday's operation. They're accusing Moscow of seeking only to keep Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in power. Russian President Vladimir Putin's rejecting the allegations of civilian deaths. (SOUNDBITE)(Russian) RUSSIAN PRESIDENT VLADIMIR PUTIN SAYING: "As to different information in the media, saying that there are victims among the civilians, we are ready for these informational attacks. I am drawing your attention to the fact that the first information about victims among the civilian population appeared before our planes were in the air." Moscow's biggest Middle East intervention in decades brings the four-year Syrian civil war into a volatile new phase. It raises the spectre of concurrent U.S. and Russian air strikes in the same region but without co-ordination. Both sides have said they will meet very soon to discuss the Syrian situation.

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Confusion over Russia air strikes on Syria

Friday, October 02, 2015 - 01:24