Unidentified militants using unmanned flying vehicles launched an airstrike on Sunday, January 20 targeting the Russian Hmeimim airbase in Syria. Air defence systems successfully thwarted the attack, and the military installation suffered no damage, according to the Russian Defence Ministry, Sputnik reports.
Following the attack, the Russian Defence Ministry issued a statement.
"With the standard anti-aircraft missile systems deployed by the Russian air base, air targets were destroyed at a safe distance. There were no injuries or material damage. Russia's Hmeimim airbase is operating in normal mode," the statement says.
The ministry noted that three small-sized drones participated in the attack, approaching the base from the northeast at nightfall.
Located in the province of Latakia in western Syria, the airbase has reportedly been a target for various militants and terrorists in the country.
The Russian military repelled a number of drone and shelling attacks in 2019, destroying 53 drones, and 27 multiple-launch rocket system shells fired towards the Hmeimim airbase.
Russia launched a military operation against terrorist groups in Syria in September 2015, at the request of Syrian President Bashar Assad.
On 11 December 2018, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the withdrawal of a significant portion of Russian troops from the country, a week after the announcement of the defeat of the Daesh terrorist group in Syria.