Russia reinforces troops in Syria instead of pulling out

Fox News:
There is more evidence that Russian forces are not pulling out of Syria, but instead, more troops are arriving there, a new video from Russian state television Saturday apparently shows.

The video shows a convoy of Russian troops headed to Palmyra to begin mine clearance operations after ISIS was routed from there earlier this week.

Col. Steve Warren, a US-led coalition spokesman in Iraq, could not confirm that Russian "sappers" or engineers had arrived in Syria when asked at a Pentagon press conference Friday.

Russian jets and helicopter gunships helped Syrian forces push ISIS from Palmyra, once a popular tourist destination filled with ancient Roman-era artifacts, earlier this week.

A US defense official tells Fox News that Syrian forces suffered "heavy losses" against ISIS, but would not offer any specifics.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said in March that his forces would begin withdrawing from Syria. Pentagon officials now say otherwise.
The Russians have definitely changed the composition of their forces in Syria.  They sent some fighter jets home but brought in more attack helicopters.  Either Putin was being misleading, which is not out of the question, or the situation on the ground changed and they needed to reinforce their efforts.

It also appears US intelligence has not been able to keep up with their moves until after the fact.


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