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Russia Fires Cruise Missiles at ISIS Targets in Syria

This photo released on Sept 2, 2017 by the Syrian official news agency SANA, shows Syrian troops and pro-government gunmen advancing up a hill in the eastern city of Deir el-Zour, Syria. (SANA via AP)
This photo released on Sept 2, 2017 by the Syrian official news agency SANA, shows Syrian troops and pro-government gunmen advancing up a hill in the eastern city of Deir el-Zour, Syria. (SANA via AP)

BEIRUT — Russia's Defense Ministry says a warship in the Mediterranean has fired cruise missiles toward targets of the Islamic State group in the eastern Syrian province of Deir el-Zour.

The ministry said the missiles were fired from a frigate on Tuesday.

Moscow is a main backer of Syrian President Bashar Assad and has fired such missiles in the past from the sea and mainland Russia.

Russia Today TV said a salvo of Kalibr cruise missiles targeted a group of militants stationed near the city of Deir el-Zour where government forces have been trying to reach the area under the cover of Russian airstrikes.

Syrian government forces have been trying to reach a handful of neighborhoods and a nearby airport that are besieged by IS.

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