Russia, for the first time (well the first documented time) has used ground forces in Syria in direct combat with ISIS rebels.
According to a report by the Jerusalem Post:
In an unprecedented move, Russia has sent ground-troops into the Syrian battlefield in support of Bashar Assad as the dictator struggles to maintain his power in the continuous four-year-long civil war, according to a report by Kuwaiti daily al-Rai.
The troops reportedly flushed rebels from several key locations. No casualty reports from the ground are currently available.
“Our objectives are being fulfilled and fulfilled well,” Vladimir Putin said, according to the RIA Novosti news agency. “But for now that is not enough to cleanse Syria of rebels and terrorists and to protect Russians from possible terrorist attacks. The military campaign has not achieved enough and a next phase is needed.”
Russian air strikes also inflicted heavy losses on ISIS supply lines today and over the weekend. According to reports, Russia has flown over 500 sorties since Friday, striking over 800 targets, many associated with ISIS supply and revenue lines.
Reportedly, 15 ISIS oil facilities and over 500 fuel trucks were destroyed in the attacks. Some estimates say the strikes could cost ISIS as much as $1.5 million per day in lost income.