KUBINKA (Moscow Region) (Sputnik) — The range of the Russian anti-aircraft system deployed at the Hmeymim air base in Syria covers all air targets within a radius of 400 kilometers (250 miles), Maj. Gen. Sergey Meshcheryakov, Deputy Commander of the Russian Air Force of the High Command of the Aerospace Forces, said Friday.
"Anti-aircraft missile systems [in Hmeymim] cover all aerial targets within a radius of 400 kilometers and below 35 kilometers," Meshcheryakov said.
The Russian anti-aircraft forces stationed at the Hmeymim air base comprise a radio-technical battalion, a Pantsir-S (SA-22 Greyhound) anti-aircraft missile gun system battery, and several S-400 (SA-21 Growler) anti-aircraft missile systems, he added.
He also said that the Russian Aerospace Forces inflicted a significant damage on the infrastructure of Daesh. According to Meshcheryakov, the Aerospace Forces hampered the groups' logistics and its ability to feed reinforcement to the troops by destroying ammunition and fuel warehouses, and weaponry maintenance factories.
Syria has been in a state of civil war since 2011, with government forces fighting Syrian opposition groups striving to overthrow the president, while also fighting numerous extremist and terrorist groups. Moscow launched its anti-terrorist operation in Syria on September 30, 2015, at the request of Damascus.
In March 2016, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered a pullout of the bulk of the Russian contingent in Syria, since the campaign's objectives had been largely completed. Following Putin’s announcement of the withdrawal, Moscow said that some Russian military personnel would remain at the Hmeymim air base as well as the naval facility at Tartus to observe the implementation of the ceasefire in Syria.