Russian submarine, warships fire cruise missiles at IS targets in Syria

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Submarine "Krasnodar" carried out launches of cruise missiles from an underwater position; Russia Today quoted the Defence Ministry statement. The submarine fired its missiles while submerged.

The "sudden massive missile strike" was directed at "command posts and large ammunition depots of IS terrorists in the vicinity of Akerbat settlement in the province of Hama", it said in a statement. It did not say when the missiles were launched.

(Russian Defense Ministry Press Service via AP) A target in Syria hit by a missile launched by a Russian Navy ship in the eastern Mediterranean.

The Russian defense ministry said Friday it had conducted a "surprise mass missile strike" against IS targets, using cruise missiles fired from the Mediterranean. Russian Federation has also suspended its communication channel with the USA on military operations in Syria.

"During the recent week, the formations of Daesh have continued their efforts to leave Raqqa for Palmyra using the 'south corridor.' At night, taking advantage of a hard terrain, terrorists deploy militants to the Hama province via various routes, where they plan to set up command posts in large buildings, as well as weapons and ammunition depots", the ministry said.

The remaining targets were destroyed in subsequent airstrikes, the ministry said.

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"If it looks like they are making a concerted effort to move into ISIS-held areas, and if they show that they can do that, that is not a bad sign", Dillon said, referring to forces of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Separately on Friday, a senior Russian lawmaker said Moscow is "nearly 100 percent" sure that the IS top leader was killed in a Russian airstrike last month.

The whereabouts of the shadowy al-Baghdadi, with a $25 million USA bounty on his head, have not been known.

Syrian government troops, with aerial support from aircraft of both Russian and Syrian air forces, also regained control over the T-3 oil pumping station, located to the southeast of the city of Palmyra.

According to the Russian military, which has been monitering the region with surveillance, Islamic State group militants have been moving into the rugged terrain around the Syrian city of Palmyra as they attempt to establish bases and ammunition depots outside of Raqqa, which is now under siege.

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