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Russian parliament approves Syrian air strikes

Wednesday, September 30, 2015 - 01:07

Russian President Vladimir Putin wins his parliament's unanimous backing to launch air strikes against Islamic State militants in Syria. Diane Hodges reports.

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A US-led coaltion has bombing Islamic State in Syria for months. Now, Russia is set to launch attacks of its own. The Russian parliament's unanimous vote comes after weeks of military buildup by Russian forces in the region. But unlike the US-led effort, Russia says it's fighting at the request of Syria's president Bashar al-Assad. SOUNDBITE: SERGEI IVANOV, SAYING: "The President of the Syria Arab Republic addressed the leadership of our country with a request for military assistance. Here is a principle distinction between our approach and the approach by our western partners." The vote follows a tense meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and U.S. President Barack Obama in New York. The two leaders clashed over the question of whether Syrian President Assad should remain in power. As a long-time ally of Syria, Russia fully supports Assad. Obama however, says Assad must step down. But Putin and Obama did agree to coordinate military action to prevent any conflicts in operations by forces from the two countries. The Kremlin says Russia's missions will be limited and that ground troops will not be involved.

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Russian parliament approves Syrian air strikes

Wednesday, September 30, 2015 - 01:07