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U.S. questions targets of Russian air strikes in Syria

Thursday, October 01, 2015 - 01:25

Russia says its air strikes in Syria are targeting Islamic State camps, but the U.S. says the strikes are hitting areas held by western-backed opponents of Syrian President Assad. Diane Hodges reports.

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This video uploaded to social media purports to show Russian air strikes on the Syrian city of Homs. Russia says it launched the strikes to destroy positions held by the Islamic State..also known as ISIL. But the head of a rebel group supported by Western nations says the strikes hit areas they control, killing at least 36 civilians. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, speaking at the United Nations in New York, said the reports raise "grave concerns," over whether Russia is trying to defeat ISIL, or opponents of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, whom Moscow supports. SOUNDBITE: KERRY SAYING: "We must not, and will not be confused, in our fight against ISIL, with support for Assad." But Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, says the strikes are aimed at ISIL. And he says all the forces battling the Islamic militants need to work together. SOUNDBITE: LAVROV "We are ready to forge standing channels of communication to ensure a maximally effective fight against terrorist groups." The civil war in Syria has been going on for more than four years, with numerous factions battling the government for control. Its estimated that more than 300,000 people have been killed so far. A US led coalition has been targetting Islamic State in Syria for months but now, with Russia joining in, the fight for power in Syria has taken on a whole new dimension

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U.S. questions targets of Russian air strikes in Syria

Thursday, October 01, 2015 - 01:25