Syrian Opposition Website: Hundreds Of Troops From Russian-Backed Syrian Elite Force Are Fighting In Eastern Ukraine

September 22, 2022

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According to a September 21, 2022 report by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), a Syrian opposition website,[1] several hundred troops from Syria's 25th Special Mission Forces Division have recently joined the Russian troops fighting in eastern Ukraine.

Citing sources in this division, which is under the command of Brigadier General Suheil Al-Hassan, known as Al-Nimr ("The Tiger"), the report states that the troops arrived in Russia several months ago via the Khmeimim Air Base in Syria, and underwent intensive training under the supervision of Russian and Syrian officers.

On September 15 the site reported[2] that 2,000 Syrian mercenaries, enlisted and trained by Russia, were stationed in Russia and in eastern Ukraine but had yet to be sent to the battlefront, inter alia because they cannot speak Russian.

Amjad News, a jihadi Syrian media outlet, claims that some of these troops have been integrated in Russia's 217th Guards Parachute Landing Regiment.[3]

Other Syrian opposition sources reported already on March 20 this year that the Russian forces in Syria, along with Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), were recruiting Syrians from the Iran-backed militias, specifically militias fighting in the area of Homs, to fight for the Russians in Ukraine.[4] Several days before that, the Ukrainian armed forces issued a statement claiming that Russia had recruited about 1,000 troops from the Syrian army and from the Lebanese Hizbullah to fight in Ukraine.[5]

The recent reports about the recruitment of Syrian troops to the war in Ukraine come amid news that, following Russia's recent setbacks in Ukraine, Moscow has announced a "partial mobilization" of 300,000 reservists.




[1] September 21, 2022.

[2] September 15, 2022.

[3] Telegram, September 21, 2022.

[5] March 18, 2022.

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