A group of Russian marines have been reportedly engaged in a battle with the Islamic State (Isis) terrorists. The Russian soldiers, along with the Hezbollah fighters and the Syrian army, fought the Isis in Aleppo province in northern Syria.
It is reported that this was the first time that the Russian soldiers from its Marine Brigade 810 fought in a battle in Syria, an Israeli website that reports on military intelligence said.
According to DEBKAfile, the Russian forces carried out a joint operation along with the Lebanese militant group and Syrian forces in an attack on the Isis at the Kweiris airbase located east of Aleppo.
Kweiris airbase is believed to be controlled by the Isis fighters from Chechnya. However, the Russians are focused on reclaiming the second largest Syrian city from the rebels, it is reported.
By retaking the area around Kweiris airbase, Russians can once again open the roads between Aleppo and Damascus, which could then help the Syrians to bring in reinforcements and military equipment.
Even as the United States is still mulling over the Russian proposal, which asks countries to fight extremists "in coordination with the governments of the affected states", Kremlin has expanded its military presence in Syria.
Russia is believed to be building a military base to house 2,000 military personnel near the coastal city of Latakia.
Russia has stationed at least 48 military aircraft and attack helicopters at the Latakia airbase. The sudden spurt in the Russian presence in Syria took many by surprise as Kremlin literally sneaked in several fighter jets over the weekend.
A US official told CNN that Russian fighter jets switched off their transponders while flying into Syria to avoid detection. The official said the fighters flew in trailing a Russian transport plane that had its transponder functioning.