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    Russian warplanes continued their mission in Syria on New Year's Eve, according to RIA Novosti.

    A Su-35 fighter of the Russian Aerospace Forces prepares for a takeoff at the Hmeimim airbase in Syria's Latakia province.
    © Photo : Ministry of defence of the Russian Federation
    Russians consider New Year's Day the biggest holiday of the year, and the airmen stationed in Syria are no exception. On December 31, Russian servicemen stationed at the Hmeymim airbase in Syria celebrated the New Year and received gifts from the Russian Defense Ministry, RIA Novosti reported.

    The servicemen met the New Year at 00:00 Moscow time, standing in order and listening to Russian President Vladimir Putin's annual New Year's address near a 15-meter-high Christmas tree.

    Russian tactical group seen at Hmeymim aerodrome in Syria
    © Sputnik / Dmitriy Vinogradov
    Russian tactical group seen at Hmeymim aerodrome in Syria

    Notably, the address was accompanied by the roar of the combat aircraft's engines as Russian pilots went ahead with their sorties despite the holiday.

    Also in attendance in Hmeymim were traditional Snow Maiden and Father Frost, who asked the servicemen "to put an end to terrorism in the Syrian Arab Republic as soon as possible and to return home as heroes, from palm trees to the Russian birch and fir trees."

    Each soldier was presented with a travel bag, a thermal mug, a food set containing sausage, cheese, red caviar and sweets, as well as a T-shirt with an image of the Su-30 fighter and the date of the beginning of the Russian air campaign. 

    The Russian air campaign was launched on September 30, 2015, when more than fifty Russian warplanes, including Su-24M, Su-25 and Su-34 jets, commenced precision airstrikes on Daesh targets in Syria at the behest of Syrian President Bashar Assad.

    Late in December, Russian Defense Ministry officials said that Russian fighter jets had completed a total of 5,240 sorties since the start of the air operation against Daesh militants in Syria.


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    sorties, servicemen, pilots, aircraft, Daesh, Vladimir Putin, Syria
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